Open defecation is one of the biggest challenges of rural India. According to a Swachhta Status Report from 2015, around 52.1% of the rural population defecates in the open. Apart from the obvious sanitation and hygiene problems, there are several other issues that stem from open defecation, especially in the case of women. In 2014, two girls of Katra Sahadatganj were gangraped and lynched when they went out to the fields to defecate.
This problem is what Akshay Kumar’s Toilet: Ek Prem Katha highlights.
In it, Akshay Kumar stars as Keshav, a simple Brahmin boy whose sole ambition in life is to get married. He meets Bhumi Pednekar (Jaya) and falls for her. From the looks of the trailer, it seems like this is yet another Bollywood film with the disappointing “hero stalks heroine and they fall in love” angle but we’ll have to wait for the movie to be released to be fully sure.
The real problem begins when the two get married and Jaya realises that the women of the house don’t have access to a loo. She refuses to be a part of the open defecation system, which causes trouble in their marriage. Keshav then resolves to fight his orthodox father and the corrupt system to ensure that his house gets a toilet.
Toilet: Ek Prem Katha could be the next step that we need in spreading awareness about the perils of open defecation.
Watch the trailer here: