The political economy of defecation

This is a story about Delhi and the Yamuna, about the relationship between one of India's richest cities and one of her most revered rivers. The plot is an economical one: the Yamuna stretches 22 kilometres along Delhi, but after Rs 55 crore to Rs 75 crore spent per kilometre on cleaning it up, the river is more spent than ever today. Devotedly, the city continues to faecally transform a river into a vast stream of flowing slime.

The story dwells on the existing clean-up strategy along the river. Briefly. For two reasons, argue sunita narain and s v suresh babu . First, the Delhi stretch compels attention. Second, there is no point in sentimentally echoing what agencies responsible for the river's clean-up say: here is an endless tragedy.

It suits these agencies -- especially in Delhi -- to keep crying over expensively spilt sewage. But it is more important to put in place a strategy that works.

In the Delhi stretch, that's possible. In the future, the Yamuna can flow again

Published: Saturday 30 April 2005

The political economy of defecation


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