BasicShit: A Collective
BasicShit is a collective with the goal to develop accessible toilet units from waste recycling. One of our dry toilet units is made from 120kg of plastic trash, equivalent to 8740 bottles.
Everyday India produces 25,940 tonnes of single-use plastic waste, which clogs our drains, rivers, canals and oceans. It takes over 400 years for a single-use plastic to decompose. But the question is, what can we do about it?
The Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, which targeted open defecation especially in rural areas, was one of the first flagship schemes of the Modi government. Several public toilets were constructed under the scheme. However, even today cities like Delhi lack an adequate number of functioning public urinals and toilets. As per the latest data from Swachh Survekshan 2019, Delhi has just 3000 public toilets for men, and only 30 for women, in a city with a population of 18.6 million.
Public sanitation problems in urban areas are constantly undermined, especially when it comes to public urination. Due to the lack of proper public urinal and sanitation facilities, peeing in public has become a habit. In many places, though urinals are present, they are not easily accessible and they aren’t properly maintained, leaving the public with no choice.
The founder of BasicShit, Ashwani, as a warrior against the public urination menace, strongly felt the need to work towards solving this problem. After studying various aspects of public urination around the country, he came up with the idea to create a street urinal which takes less up space, uses less or no water, is odour free, and can be installed quickly.
Thus, BasicShit has designed an eco-friendly ’PeePee’ public toilet made out of single-use plastic which is thrown away as garbage. Each PeePee toilet can eliminate more than 9000 single-use plastic bottles from ending up in our water bodies. These toilets require no water to clean and are smell free.
Ashwani tried and tested multiple urinal designs across the country, out of which 30 – 40 units are still working. He spent his own money on research and development, and he also received a grant from the Asian Development Bank. He has authored several research papers and case studies on how public urination affects public health in urban areas.
The 2015 7th World Water Forum (pictured above) brought together over 40,000 visitors from 168 countries. Attendees were comprised of 9 Heads of State, 80 government ministers, and 100 official national governments delegations. Entitled ‘Water for our Future’, the 7th edition of the world’s largest event on water issues was heralded by participants as the most politically impactful ever.
The legacy the 7th World Water Forum therefore included:
Moving from Solutions to Implementation
Bridging the Platform of Science & Technology to Water Issues
Ensuring a significant place for water in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
BasicShit was invited to exhibit our work, and we were awarded a grant of Rs 2,50,000 for moving the cause forward. BasciShit's founder, Ashwani Aggarwal, presented the need of urgent attention towards the public sanitation systems in the streets of India.