Swachh Bharat Mission (Urban): Need vs Planning

This paper analyses the effectiveness of the Swachh Bharat Mission (Urban) by analyzing the financial and physical progress of the mission and the manner in which funds have been allocated and sanctioned to different activities in various states. It examines the planned allocation of central funds (i) between the SBM (Urban) and the rural component, SBM (Gramin) (ii) among the various components of SBM-U, i.e., Construction of Individual Household Latrines and Community Toilets (IHHLs and CTs), Solid Waste Management (SWM), Information, Education and Communication (IEC) and Capacity Building (CB) and (iii) across different states and UTs. It finds that the disparity in funding between the SBM-U and SBM-G does not reflect the risk-adjusted need of urban areas, given their complexities of urban congestion and poverty that lead to higher health and environmental risk. The allocation of funds between the various components of SBM-U undervalues the need for proper solid waste management, IEC and Capacity Building and appears to ignore their effect on sanitation practices, the importance of building capacity to properly manage waste from the increasing number of toilets constructed and more organized solid waste disposal. Finally, the pattern of the allocation of funds between states does not benefit states that need it the most, in terms of states that have a lower share of in-house toilets, because the funds were allocated on the basis of the share of urban population and statutory towns. The paper concludes with recommendations to rectify some of these shortcomings.