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In India, more homes have cell phones than toilets

Here’s an interesting factoid report from PSI’s Healthy Lives blog:

While 63 percent of Indian homes have mobile phones, less than half have toilets.

Here’s a map showing rates of toiletlessness (They persist in referring to them as latrines):

The PSI article quotes an Indian official::

“Open defecation continues to be a big concern for the country as almost half of the population do it,” Registrar General and Census Commissioner C Chandramouli said while releasing the latest data. “Cultural and traditional reasons and a lack of education are the prime reasons for this unhygienic practice. We have to do a lot in these fronts,” he said.

Cultural and traditional reasons and lack of education? That’s why Indians poop outside?

How about the Indian government’s lack of investment in basic infrastructure?


About Author

Tom Paulson

Tom Paulson is founder and lead journalist at Humanosphere. Prior to operating this online news site, he reported on science,  medicine, health policy, aid and development for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Contact him at tom[at] or follow him on Twitter @tompaulson.