Humiliating to defecate in open, says woman after suicide attempt

A 25-year-old woman in Deoghar district tried to kill herself on Sunday by consuming rat poison, claiming she could not bear the daily ignominy of defecating in the open in the absence of a functional toilet.

She was rushed to the local Sadar hospital where she was saved by doctors and discharged on Monday.

The woman’s husband, who works as a vendor, said they are residents of Bairaji Tola, Baijnathpur, located in ward number 27 of the district. His family, comprising his wife and their five-year-old daughter, faced severe inconvenience as there was no toilet in his house. On Sunday morning, after he left for work, he received a phone call from his neighbours who informed him that his wife was ill. Later, his wife told him she had consumed rat poison as it was humiliating for to defecate in open.

“There are a lot of men around. It’s not easy being a woman without a toilet. Defecating in the open is a shame. I took this extreme step because of humiliation and anger,” the woman said on Tuesday.

The couple said they had submitted several applications for construction of a toilet but no action was taken. When they went to the offices of the officials concerned, they were told they were busy because of the Lok Sabha elections.

Ashok Kumar Singh, municipal commissioner of Deoghar, said that either the name of the household was missing from the survey, or the family did not approach the local authorities. He, however, promised that a toilet for the family would be constructed soon.

During the state’s foundation day in November 2018, CM Raghubar Das had announced that the state had achieved the target of becoming ODF a year ahead of the national deadline (October 2, 2019). As per officials, the state has constructed more than 33 lakh toilets in rural Jharkhand against the requirement of 40 lakh in the past four years.

First Published:
May 28, 2019 00:01 IST

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