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Total Sanitation Campaign is a comprehensive programme to ensure sanitation facilities in rural areas with broader goal to eradicate the practice of open defecation. TSC as a part of reform principles was initiated in 1999 when Central Rural Sanitation Programme was restructured making it demand driven and people centered. It follows a principle of “low to no subsidy” where a nominal subsidy in the form of incentive is given to rural poor households for construction of toilets.

            TSC gives strong emphasis on Information, Education and Communication (IEC), Capacity Building and Hygiene Education for effective behaviour change with involvement of PRIs, CBOs, and NGOs etc. The key intervention areas are Individual household latrines(IHHL), School Sanitation and Hygiene Education(SSHE), Community Sanitary Complex,Anganwadi toilets supported by Rural Sanitary Marts (RSMs) and Production Centers(PCs). The main goal of the GOI is to eradicate the practice of open defecation by 2017. To give fillip to this endeavor, GOI has launched Nirmal Gram Puraskar to recognize the efforts in terms of cash awards for fully covered PRIs and those individuals and institutions who have contributed significantly in ensuring full sanitation coverage in their area of operation. The project is being implemented in rural areas taking district as a unit of implementation.  To add vigour to the TSC, in October 2003, Government of India initiated an incentive scheme named the 'Nirmal Gram Puraskar’(NGP). NGP is given to those "open defecation free" Nirmal Gram Panchayats, Blocks, and Districts which have become fully sanitized. The incentive provision is for Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs) as well as individuals and organizations that are the driving force for full sanitation coverage. A "Nirmal Gram" is an "Open Defecation Free" village where all houses, Schools and Anganwadis having sanitary toilets and awareness amongst community on the importance of maintaining personal and community hygiene and clean environment.