Kothagudem: The remote Kummaripadu village of Bhadradri-Kothagudem district will soon emerge as the frontrunner in Telangana State in implementing Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Swachh Bharat campaign.

Several Koya tribal families in this village proved themselves no inferior to the educated urbanites in implementing the cleanliness campaign. 

What Kummaripadu residents could do baffled even villages with all amenities and close to urban areas. Thanks to official encouragement, the illiterate tribals in the newly-formed district proved that they are ahead of others in terms of sanitation.

They realised the importance of having hygienic surroundings and importance of conserving water. The village is located 42 km away from the district headquarters. It comes under the mandal of Mulakalapalli.

There are 140 houses in the predominantly tribal hamlet. Responding to a call given by Narenda Modi, the residents built water-harvesting structures to rule out water scarcity for the posterity. The credit for every household having these structures goes to Self-Help Groups in the village.

Earlier, even toilet was a rarity in Kummaripadu. However, the village thrived under the direction of the Self-Help Groups. The nondescript village has set an example for others to emulate in implementing Swachh Bharat and water harvesting structures. A team of trainee IAS officers visited the village and appreciated the tribals in implementing the twin issues when cities are finding it difficult to completely implement them.

Besides the two issues, the villagers took to organic cultivation of vegetables. Earlier, the Horticulture Department supplied packets of various seeds to every household in the village. The tribals sowed them in the early monsoon season and are now growing lady’s fingers, ridge gourd, bitter gourd, bottle gourd and other vegetables using organic fertilisers. The village has 74 compost making pits. It has over 140 NREGS job cards.

Sarpanch of the village Savalam Sujata said the State government financially supported the villagers in construction of rainwater harvesting pits, construction of individual toilets, compost pits and so on. The village is free from various insects, including mosquitoes, and is free from sewerage puddles and the resultant stink coming from them.

A resident of the village, Kaka Chimpiri, said the village was free from mosquito menace. According to DRDA Project Director Jagatkumar Reddy, the village is a complete tribal hamlet and never heard of even toilets. The DRDA worked hard with NGOs for more than four months to sensitise them. The SHG members first built individual toilets in their homes and encouraged others to follow suit.

Beyond imagination of officials, all households in the village have now individual toilets. Afterwards, the officials sensitised the villagers on prevention of water wastage and to conserve water through construction of rainwater harvesting structures. The DRDA supported the village in getting financial support to all villagers.

As a result, Kummaripadu has achieved a distinguished place in the State in implementation of the Swachh Bharat and water conservation methods.