Renowned social activist, Dr Bhindeshwar Pathak is the founder of Sulabh International Toilet Museum in East Delhi, established in 1992. Dr Pathak is probably the modern day Ambedkar for taking a stance for the respect and dignity of the so-called scavenger population of India.
The Museum displays different types of sanitation arrangements made over the last five thousand years, starting from 3rd millennium BC to the end of 20th century. It is divided into three main sections- ancient, medieval and modern.
The ancient section boasts of the civilization magnificence of Mohenjo-daro, Egypt, Babylon, Crete, Jerusalem, Greece and Rome and how they tended to the demand of sanitation needs.
The medieval section deals with the sanitation arrangements of Mughal Emperor Akbar and other feudal kings of India, with a vast display of South Indian kings and princesses too. A table top closet of Queen Elizabeth and international sections that displays such facilities in Austria are also there. Cross stools from Europe that were used during those periods are also displayed.
The modern section displays catalogue models of leading commode manufacturers and also some electronic and ultra modern toilets from Japan, Korea etc. A toy-commode from China and the world's largest toilet complex of Shirdi, Maharashtra, are the main attractions of this section. Anecdotes and toilet jokes are another attraction.
Let us together keep a step forward in awareness regarding sanitation as it would ultimately lead to good health and a disease free India, as Gandhiji rightly pointed out, 'Sanitation is more important than independence.'