India Insight

Mind your pees & queues for the Delhi Games

With just six months to go before India hosts the Commonwealth Games, some are already wondering whether New Delhi is loo-ready for the sporting extravaganza.

File photo of an Oxford Circus lavatory cubicle in London.The capital is preparing to host more than 100,000 foreign visitors for the October Games, seen as an opportunity to show off the city as a major global destination.

Authorities have started worrying about the thousands of tourists — especially when it comes to answering the call of nature.

The sight of people urinating by the roadside is so common that residents turn a blind eye to the problem. But it’s not the lasting memory of New Delhi the city’s tourism department wants to give visitors.

To make it easier on the bladder, authorities will soon launch a Delhi “loo-map“, one that will inform tourists where public toilets are located.

It pays to use an Indian public toilet

rtr1e5ov.jpgLast month, authorities in a southern Indian state fined people caught urinating in public view for a few days.

This week, officials in a remote town started offering people money for using public urinals.

Quite amused reading these news items, I wonder whether we are witnessing the winds of change finally in India or are we just watching another piece of local image-building exercise before elections ?