In an effort to enforce the building and usage of home toilets, employees of the Sitapur Education Department in Uttar Pradesh have been ordered to send in a picture of themselves with their crappers or risk a month’s salary.
According to reports in Aaj Tak, Dainik Jagran, and Navbharat Times, a May 25 order signed by the district's Basic Shiksha Adhikari (BSA) stated that “If you will not provide the evidence of you using a toilet to your HOD [by May 27], your salary for the month of May will not be released. It should be a recently taken photo in front of toilet.”
According to a report in the Dainik Jagran, District Magistrate Sheetal Verma claimed this was a measure to “cull out those using public aid to build toilets.” Toilets and Sitapur have had a checkered history and curbing corruption is one thing, but docking people if they don’t send in a bathroom selfie seems a bit much (even if it has the best lighting).
The order is marked to educational officers, teachers, cooks, security guards, and others in government-aided schools, middle-schools and girls hostels.
While there has reportedly been some pushback, there's too much on the line for some. A report in Navbharat Times published the picture sent in by school principal Bhagwati Prasad perched adjacent to his toilet.
VICE tried contacting Verma, but were only able to speak briefly to her Officer on Special Duty, KR Rizvi, who brushed us off.