'Can't afford a loo for your wife? Then sell her'

Aurangabad District Magistrate Kanwal Tanuj

Aurangabad District Magistrate Kanwal Tanuj

"If this is your mentality then go and sell your wife".

The effort to promote Swachh Bharat Abhiyan by Bihar's Aurangabad District Magistrate Kanwal Tanuj turned controversial when the official said that those who can not build a toilet at home, should do something that is shocking.

A villager from the audience responded to Tanuj's questions and said that he did not have enough money to build a toilet at home.

Addressing the gathering standing at a podium, Tanuj explained to villagers the schemes and initiatives taken by the government that people could benefit from. "Which man would say that take the dignity of my wife and give me Rs 12,000? Those who can not build toilet should sell or auction his wife", he said. In order to ensure that the reimbursements being sought are genuine, a certificate issued by the local panchayat issues verifying that the toilet has been built is required. He should have answered him politely and treated villager question as a challenge that the government policies had failed to consider and ideally should spend time addressing. "Who can let her wife get raped in return of Rs. 12000?"

Tanuj, apparently irritated, bit back, "I will talk to you".

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"If you are an IAS officer, it does not mean that you can say anything", said Samajwadi Party's Juhi Singh.

In September previous year, Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar had launched a couple of schemes - Har Ghar Nal Ka Jal and Shauchalay Nirman, Ghar Ka Sammaan - as part of the state government's Saat Nishchay or Seven Resolves. It only costs Rs 12,000 for the construction of a toilet.

Under the Centre's Swachh Bharat Abhiyan and Nitish Kumar's scheme for the state, villagers are eligible for a Rs 12,000 reimbursement if they build toilets in their homes.

However, when one of the villagers told him that he didn't have Rs 12,000 to build a toilet at his home, the DM got angry.

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