By Rajendra B Aklekar, Mumbai Mirror | May 5, 2015, 12.05 AM IST
Bio-toilets that were fitted in train coaches amid much fanfare are already stinking, with some passengers complaining that the stench is so foul that it is unbearable for those sitting near the toilets.
According to Central Railway’s (CR) official data, of the 4,000 coaches of the long-distance CR trains, 450 were fitted with bio-toilets. The project had gathered momentum after Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan and urged authorities to maintain cleanliness in trains and on tracks. A few coaches in the Rajdhani Express trains of Western Railway (WR) were also provided with bio-toilets.
Unlike traditional train toilets that discharge waste on the tracks, the new system treats the waste inside a tank with the help of bacteria and converts it into harmless gas and water. The Railways had signed MoU with the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) for the project, and the anaerobic bacteria were procured from Antarctica.
Commuters, however, are far from impressed. Nitin Parmar, secretary of Karjat Railway Passenger Association, said, “In most trains with bio-toilets, the stench is unbearable — not only near the toilet but also within the coaches. This is not a one-off thing. I have been observing this often. Biotoilets have been fitted in random coaches, and they all have this foul smell. Passengers sitting near the door have to keep their noses covered all the time. The activist travels between Mumbai and Pune regularly and has done a survey of trains with bio-toilets.
In fact, a maintenance worker to whom Mumbai Mirror spoke, also complained about the unbearable stench. “The technology is good but it is not being maintained the way it should be. There are a lot of processes to maintain but train coaches cannot be practically detained for such a long time as they are always scheduled for runs. If clean toilets are giving out foul smell, there must be something wrong,” he added, on the condition of anonymity.
Another staffer said, “If any foul smell is detected after the removal of waste and cleaning of the toilet, the tank has to be topped up with nearly 15 litres of bacteria. A check is conducted after a week and samples are the n sent for lab testing.”
A former member of the national railway passenger committee, Shailesh Goyal, said, “Bio-toilets are not a practical idea for trains. At many WR stations, the train is back on track within two hours. There is no time to clean the toilets. Also, bio-toilets require hi-end mechanism and a dedicated staff to keep them clean.”
Subhash Gupta, a member of the divisional railway users consultative committee, said he will raise the issue at the official railway forum next week.
While railway officials refused to speak on record, a senior official said, “Not only are all new coaches to be fitted with bio-toilets but the workshops are being instructed to fit in bio-toilets in old trains, taken up for maintenance, as well.” Another staffer said the biggest problem were the commuters themselves. “Many bio-toilets have become choked because passengers dump anything from water bottles to gutkha pouches and polythene in them. The bio-digester bins have turned into garbage bins. We will intensify awareness campaigns to avoid this,” said an official.
The claim of anaerobic bacteria were procured from Antarctica is total farzi these microbes are available in cow dunks,
Bio toilet is big drama of DRDO, conceptualized by Dr W Selvamurthy, patronage by Dr V K Saraswat and executed by Dr. Lokendra Singh.
Sh Jayaram Ramesh did this for political mileage on face value of DRDO ” Odisha government has told the National Human Rights Commission that nine of the 12 bio digaster toilets are defunct. Doing so they have correctly done the services as now right action will be taken against this.”
Suresh Prabhu also come under influence of Dr V K Saraswat and announced in recent budget 17000 Bio Toilets for railway coach – it will become disaster for railway and Modi government
But it appeared in leading newspapers and media some time back that bacteria were brought from Antarctica. It is written in his (Lokenra Singh) book also which was published by Lap Lambert press. But can we bring bacteria/microbe without permission and where these were submitted in India. Were these deposited in mtcc or nccs. This is a big question.
In the Name of Bio toilet Lokendra Singh group like Dr. Kambhoj, Dr. A.K. Goel are enjoying OS promotion without doing any work. There is no Antartica bacteria. It is cowdung which never works at low temperature. One of Lokendra Singh Chella Dr Anurag Pandey got OS in Tezpur, got transfer to Gwalior and to nagpur where no life sciences work is going on. Without any work he is getting OS and got transfered to near his native place doing nothing but informing all the gossips to seniors
pol khol says
Antarctica??? Bacteria which is brought from there was tried to use in siachen which many operational problems including improper digestion….. One day our loku went to his village n sitting on a cot near a gobar gas plant at back yard of his home…… For kya …… Like newton he also got an idea ….. Yaar Antarctica ka cold place digesting bacteria to cow n buffalo ke gobar me bhi note he…. Kyon naa tatti ka tank me he Thoda gobar milaale ….. aur kya….Archimedes jaise. … Eureka eureka bolke pura bharat ko ullu banaane chela……. Jyada puche to bas Antarctica ka naam lo….aur do char bacteria ka scientific name bolo aur chip karao…..Asli baat ye he bhai log DRDE me roj 400 ltr gobar mangvaaya jata he aur char panch din eak sealed tank ghumaake railway ko supply large he….. Neta ko …Janata ko bewakoof banavo… Aur desh ka paisa looto
pol khol says
Antarctica??? Bacteria which is brought from there was tried to use in siachen which many operational problems including improper digestion….. One day our loku went to his village n sitting on a cot near a gobar gas plant at back yard of his home…… aur kya …… Like newton he also got an idea ….. Yaar Antarctica ka cold place digesting bacteria to cow n buffalo ke gobar me bhi hote he…. Kyon naa tatti ka tank me he thoda gobar milaale ….. aur kya….Archimedes jaise. … Eureka eureka bolke pura bharat ko ullu banaane chela……. Jyada puche to bas Antarctica ka naam lo….aur do char bacteria ka scientific name bolo aur chup karao…..Asli baat ye he bhai log DRDE me roj 400 ltr gobar mangvaaya jata he aur char panch din eak sealed tank ghumaake railway ko supply karte he….. Neta ko …Janata ko bewakoof banavo… Aur desh ka paisa looto
A well wisher of DRDO says
All these bio-toilet in railway are the source of stink. They never work, people are unable to use. As per rama Rao committee. bio labs were to be abandoned and given to some other Bio-establishments . DRDO should focus on weapons aaand strategic technologies. But when you dont have any thing to deliver, Bio-toilets hi sahi, You get publicity and make the others fool…..
It is claimed that the effluent is 100% hygeinic and can bu used for agriculture etc. Even some scientists have claimed that it csn be drinked also and even tried to drink to influence the visitors and vendors. Purely stunt publicity to play with the emotion of people. But actually the effluent is not safe at all. Study has proved this. For example if faeces has giadia, antamoeba, taenia or other infection then how it could be deactivated. Do bio digester has some mechanism to netralise such highly virulent infection. Of course, it will affect the user. Please give a scientific thought.