This study was carried out to determine the magnitude to which Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) approach leads to improved sanitation and its potential threats to groundwater quality and health of people. A comparative study was carried out between eight CLTS and non CLTS villages to measure the outcomes of CLTS approach. Water samples were collected to assess the level of contamination in groundwater sources near pits in villages where CLTS approach was adopted. Semi structured interviews, focused group discussions (FGDs) and transit walks were used for data collection. Results revealed the tendency of high level of groundwater contamination in CLTS as compared to non CLTS villages which might be because of pit latrines in the area. Water for hand washing is available, but the use of soap depends upon the economic status of the households. However, 5% increase in the hand washing practices was noticed during the field data collected in CLTS implemented village as compared to non CLTS villages. In addition, water borne disease prevalence was also noticed in CLTS villages, but some improvements were observed in terms of hygiene among the people in CLTS implemented villages. The findings showed that the drinking water quality is deteriorated in the study areas which could be linked to promotion of sanitation systems that do not break the pathogen cycle.
Key words: Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) villages, groundwater contamination, Environmental sanitation, health, hygiene.
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