The district administration of Nadia, West Bengal was on 26 June 2015 conferred with the United Nations Public Service Award 2015 for eliminating open defecation in the district.
The award was presented by acting Secretary General of the UN Lenni Montiel along with Head UN Women Stefani Senese to District Magistrate of Nadia and Sabhapati of Nadia Zilla Parishad on conclusion of United Nations Day Celebrations 2015 held at Medellin, Columbia.
Nadia district could achieve this feat due to its collaborative effort with the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and World Bank aimed at construction of toilets across the district.
Till October 2013, half of the district’s population was defecating in open spaces. However, the situation was improved under the Sabar Souchagar (Toilets for All) programme that was launched on 2 October 2013 by the district administration.
Under this programme, around 356000 toilets were built that resulted in decline in the number of people continuing with the practice to meager 0.2 percent.
Earlier, on 30 April 2015, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee declared Nadia as the first open defecation-free (ODF) district in India and launched Mission Nirmal Bangla (MNB) aimed at making the state open defecation free.
She also declared 30 April as Nirmal Bangla Diwas, to be observed across the state, to mark the occasion.
About United Nations Public Service Awards
It is the most prestigious international recognition of excellence in public service. It rewards the creative achievements and contributions of public service institutions that lead to a more effective and responsive public administration in countries worldwide.
In 2014, the project Mobile Seva under Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DeitY) had won the second rank in the 2014 United Nations Public Service Award.
It won the second place in the Asian and Pacific Region in the Category 3: PROMOTING WHOLE OF GOVERNMENT APPROACHES IN THE INFORMATION AGE.
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When: 26 June 2015