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E Publisher cum Editor Rajneesh Sharma Associate Editor Swarnendu Biswas Resident Editor Sharmila Chand (Delhi) Ashok Malkani (Mumbai) Sub-Editor Angshupriya Danda Layout & Design Hari Kumar. V Narender Kumar Advertising Sales Delhi: Debabrath Nath, Sumesh Sharma Mumbai: Rajesh Tupsakhre Subscription Sales Dattaram Gangurde Director Sales Sanjay Anand Director Operations & Finance Rajat Taneja Editorial & Advertising Offices: Delhi: Hammer Publishers Pvt. Ltd. 1202, Pragati Tower, 26, Rajindra Place, New Delhi-110008 Phone: 91-11-45084903, 25854103 / 05 Mumbai: Hammer Publishers Pvt. Ltd. 105, 1st Floor, Aarpee Centre, Gufic Compound, 11th Road, MIDC, Near Tunga Paradise, Andheri (E), Mumbai-400 093 Ph.: 91-22-28395833 Telefax: 91-22-28388947 Website: E-mail: © 2013 Hammer Publishers Pvt. Ltd. Clean & Hygiene Review is a bi-monthly magazine, printed, owned and published by Rajneesh Sharma from 313, Himgiri Apartments, J-Block, Vikaspuri, New Delhi. Printed at Print Creations, C-112/3, Basement, Naraina Industrial Area, Phase-1, New Delhi-110 028.









Maintaining cleanliness and hygiene seems to be an onerous challenge, even in modern day India of satellites and social networks. Not only our public toilets are littered with human waste, our mountains are strewn with plastic bottles too; not only we have severe sewerage problems, we have the constant health apprehension from our casually dumped bio-medical waste too. In this scenario, it is not surprising that the sanitation levels at two of the fundamental edifices of our society —the Indian Railways and schools — present by and large a dismal picture. Those who have travelled in our trains, especially in non AC coaches, on a frequent basis, know that the Railways’ coaches and toilets are characterised by rampant lack of sanitation. Scurrying rats, scattered outer covering of groundnuts, and strewn plastic bottles are regular feature in rail coaches. Often the toilets in trains do not have even soaps and water. Same unhygienic culture is being replicated on the railway tracks, where human waste shares space on either side of tracks with snack food packets and paper cups. It is not to say that our airports are spic and span at all times, but in India it seems that those who cannot fork out thousands for fares do not have the right to hygienic travel. The sanitation in great many of our schools is nothing short of deplorable, with lack of drinking water and proper toilet facilities rampant in rural Indian schools. Lack of separate usable toilets for girl students often compel them to drop out from education. We have explored the issues of pathetic sanitation scenario in our schools and Railways in our Cover Story, with brief reference to airports, and have also suggested some pragmatic solutions to redress the problem. Some recent initiatives of the Indian Railways to facilitate cleanliness in its infrastructure are also being discussed in the story. For example, the Indian Railways’ initiative to induct bio-toilets in a big way is a welcome step to prevent accumulation of human waste on the railway tracks. Housekeeping is needed in house and across various facilities, ranging from public gardens to offices to malls. But in hotels and healthcare, the role of housekeeping is extremely crucial. In fact, the hospitality and healthcare cannot survive without housekeeping. The difference between great and mediocre housekeeping can mean the difference between thriving business of a hotel and its premature closure, and similarly, housekeeping below impeccable standards can lead to death of patients in hospitals. The various facets of housekeeping in hotels and healthcare are expressed in our feature on housekeeping, which may help an entrepreneur entering housekeeping to serve the hotel and healthcare industries in a better manner. Besides these topical issues, other relevant information, opinions and analysis for the housekeeping industry are put across through our other regular and additional features, report and news items. Together, they can keep our readers engrossed between the pages.

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Editorial Policy : Editorial emphasis in Clean & Hygiene Review magazine is on educational & informational material specifically designed to assist those responsible for managing cleaning & maintenance, Laundry, Pest Control, Water & Waste Management and Environment. Articles are welcome and will be published on the sole discretion of the editor.


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News Scan




Pest Management






Product Preview





HOSFAIR Guangzhou 2013 to Celebrate its 11th Anniversary

The 11th Guangzhou International Hospitality Equipment and Supplies Fair or HOSFAIR 2013 will be held during 27th-29th June 2013, at the China Import and Export Fair Complex. The annual show has gradually emerged as a prominent and highquality hospitality show over the years. With the objective of maximising the potential of related sectors and creating a comprehensive exhibition, the show will host ten sectors from the industry namely kitchen and catering, hotel furniture, hotel textile, clean and laundry, interior supplies tableware, intelligence, coffee, wine & spirit, food and beverage. The show is expected to arrange more than 4000 stands and cover 80,000 square meters of exhibition space. Guided by the spirit of innovation, cooperation and internationalisation, HOSFAIR Guangzhou is geared to become a grand fair in the hospitality industry. With an objective to hone the fair as the most effective platform for hotel supplies, manufacturers and traders, HOSFAIR has introduced the brands of the exhibitors into the international market as well.

Synergy Exposures Will Organise 3 rd Hospitality Business Fair and Food & Beverage Process Tech Fair 2013 The 3rd Hospitality Business Fair 2013 and Food & Beverage Process Tech Fair 2013 will be organised by Synergy Exposures & Events India Pvt. Ltd. from June 14th-16th 2013, in Chennai. The concurrent events catering to the hotel and food processing sector will also organise a conference i.e. Hospitality Knowledge Sharing Forum 2013, in partnership with leading industrial associations at the same venue. Synergy Exposures & Events India Pvt. Ltd. has in the past organised several successful expos across South India, covering a variety of subjects. This expo is aimed at contributing to the growth of the hospitality industry and food processing industry by enabling the manufacturers and service providers with an opportunity to be at the right place. Hospitality Business Fair 2013 aims at providing a platform for face-to-face interaction between the manufacturers or suppliers and the buyers. The expo is expected to showcase over 150 exhibitors from across the globe. The unique feature of the event is that it is a highly focused event revolving around the hotels and food chains in South India. South Indian Hotel and Restaurant Association (SIHRA), Hospitality Purchasing Managers Forum (HPMF), The Tamil Nadu Hotels Association, Indo French Chamber Of Commerce and Industry (IFCCI), TN Bakers Federation India, etc. have extended their support for the event and will promote the expo to their members.


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Mar-Apr ’13



Illegal Packaged Water Plants Gover nment Encouraging Ordered to Shut Down by Safe and Judicious Use of Pesticides National Green Tribunal In the month of March, around 34 packaged drinking water plants in Noida and Greater Noida were ordered by the National Green Tribunal to lock up their facilities, because of their illegal functioning without any proper sanctions from respective authority and for the extraction of groundwater. The tribunal bench has stated in the order, “The water scarcity in these cities is being facilitated by the illegally functioning units. Besides facilitating pollution, these plants have been specifically exploiting groundwater as stated in the affidavit. This practice is leading to a scarcity in water.” The bench in this regard has ordered authorities in Noida and Greater Noida to issue closure notices to these 34 illegally operating units. This order was passed by a bench of the National Green Tribunal following a petition filed by Vikrant Tongad, an environmental activist. The petition alleges that the fast depletion of groundwater is a direct result of the ceaseless extraction of the same. The green body has also affirmed the non removal of the ban imposed by it in January, for prohibiting extraction of groundwater for activities related to construction and otherwise in the city of Noida and Greater Noida.

The Union Government is popularising the strategy of Integrated Pest Manatement (IPM) through a Central Sector Scheme titled ‘Strengthening and Modernization of Pest Management Approach in India,’ which includes cultural, mechanical, biological and other methods of pest control and emphasises on safe and judicious use of pesticides. Under the ambit of this IPM programme, the Government has established 31 Central IPM Centres in 28 States and one UT. The mandate of these Centres is pest/disease monitoring, production and release of bio-control agents/bio-pesticides, conservation of bio-control agents and human resource development in IPM by imparting training to Agriculture/ Horticulture Extension Officers and farmers at grass root level, by organising Farmers Field Schools (FFSs) in farmers’ fields. The basic aim of FFS is to train the farmers on the latest IPM technology so that they are able to take decision in pest management operations. So far, up to the year 2011-12, the Directorate of Plant Protection Quarantine and Storage (DPPQ&S), an attached organisation of the Ministry of Agriculture, had organised 13,991 FFSs wherein 57, 962 Agriculture/Horticulture Extension Officers and 4,20,720 farmers in different crops have been trained on latest IPM technology in various crops. The National Institute of Plant Heath Management, an autonomous body under the Ministry of Agriculture, has in the recent past adopted 27 villages where field service training was conducted involving officer trainees in plant protection. The farmers of these villages have been benefited by adoption of IPM technologies.

Toilet Facilities in Rural Areas of the Country As per the Joint Monitoring Programme ( JMP) Report, published by the World Health Organization (WHO) and United Nations Children`s Fund (UNICEF), the sanitation coverage in rural areas of India was approximately 33 percent, in the year 2010. Census 2011 also reported sanitation coverage of 32.67 percent in the rural areas. To eliminate the practice of open defecation, to promote the use of toilets and to accelerate the progress of sanitation in rural areas of the country, Government of India took a major initiative in the XIIth Five Year Plan and has designed a paradigm shift in Total Sanitation Campaign (TSC), which is now called the Nirmal Bharat Abhiyan (NBA). The new strategy is to transform rural India into `Nirmal Bharat` by adopting community saturation approach. Under NBA, the provision of enhanced incentive for individual household latrine units has been made and the same has been widened to cover all APL households who belong to SCs, STs, small and marginal farmers, landless labourers with homesteads, physically challenged and women headed households along-with all BPL households, w.e.f 01.04.2012.


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Usage of Glycerine in Manufacturing Can Facilitate Cleaner Industrial Processes and Less Pollution A recent research that shows how glycerine and other byproducts from biodiesel production can be converted to catalysts for greener industrial processes, is being honoured with the Glycerine Innovation Award 2013. The yearly honour is sponsored by the American Cleaning Institute (ACI) and the National Biodiesel Board (NBB) and is presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Oil Chemists’ Society (AOCS). The 2013 award recipient is Dr. B.L.A. Prabhavathi Devi from the Centre for Lipid Research at CSIR-Indian Institute of Chemical Technology, Hyderabad, India. The ACI/NBB Glycerine Innovation Award recognises outstanding achievement for research into new applications for glycerine, with particular emphasis on commercial viability. Dr. Prabhavathi said that she along with her group, have been researching how glycerol can be utilised for the development of novel value added products. The researchers developed glycerol-based catalysts, including waste from the fat-splitting industry, to replace chemicals more traditionally used in manufacturing processes, like sulfuric acid and alkali catalysts. The use of such glycerine-based products can enhance the economies of the oleo chemical and biodiesel industries. “Our catalyst based reactions may lead to cleaner industrial processes and reduced pollution,” said Dr. Prabhavathi. The Glycerine Innovation Award includes a plaque and a $5,000 honorarium. It was presented at the AOCS Industrial Oil Products Division luncheon during the 2013 AOCS Annual Meeting in Montreal, Canada.

DJB and Water Utility Associations Discourse on Water Management Issues



The Delhi Jal Board (DJB), together with various water utility associations in India, held a collective discussion in the first week of March to share the best practices and experiences in water management and other related issues. This initiative of DJB brought together various bodies on a single platform to address a singular problem prevalent across the country. Gaurav Gupta, Chairman, Bengaluru Water Supply and Sewerage Board, asserted, “There is a requirement to look at the conjunctive use of ground water, surface water and recycling of sewage.” The symposium was inaugurated by Sheila Dikshit, Chief Minister, Delhi and Chairman, DJB. The conference emphasised on a case study approach for strategy, funding, treatment technologies, waste water reuse, and non-revenue water reduction. The two-day seminar saw the coming together of water utility associations for creating a platform of knowledge sharing among the contributors. Municipal Commissioner, Nagpur Municipal Corporation, Shyam Wardhane,came up with a surprising observation. He added, “There is a reduction in the consumption of water after it was available for 24 hours. This has been verified from our conduct sources.” DJB’s CEO, Debashree Mukherjee said, “There is a requirement of water audit not just for utilities but also among consumers.” At the conference, the Chief Minister of Delhi launched a manual on ‘Rehabilitation of Truck Sewers and Challenges,’ which is authored by the Chief Engineer, DJB, RS Tyagi.

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Mar-Apr ’13



Faulty Sewage Treatment Leads to Toxic Groundwater By Angshupriya Danda


recent convention organised by the Centre for Science and Environment released figures that explained the present sewage and water issues in the country. According to a recent research, which was floated in this convention, nearly 80 percent of the sewage generated in India flows unprocessed into the water bodies like rivers, lakes and ponds, thereby rendering these water sources unfit for human use by inflicting them with pollution. This rampant issue of untreated sewage flowing into the aquifers of groundwater results in higher nitrate levels, more than the prescribed levels. The increasing seepage of untreated sewage in the groundwater sources is facilitating unhealthy environment through polluted groundwater sources that raises the concern towards health related issues amongst the population of India. At a meeting organised as a part of the ‘Anil Agarwal Dialogues’ series, b y t h e C e n t re for Science and Environment, these worrisome figures were released which justifiably generated concern amongst the panel. The VicePresident of India, M. Hamid Ansari, while speaking at the symposium averred, “The Indian cities together generate almost 40,000 million litres of sewage every day, which is sufficient to irrigate 9 million hectares of land. The concern is that barely 20 percent of this waste undergoes treatment.” Research shows that not even a


single Indian city is equipped with a sewage system which covers the total population of the given city. In four cities, that is in Chennai, Gurgaon, Surat and Pune, the authorities claim to have connected at least 70 percent

them vulnerable to health related diseases.” The panel expressed that despite continued urbanisation in India, millions of population in rural India still continue to depend

of the city’s population through a channel of closed drainage system. In most of the remaining cities in the country, the sewage flows into the

upon river water and groundwater sources. “India is the highest user of groundwater with more than 20 million irrigation wells dotted across the country and almost 80 percent of the population still depending on self-supply of water for personal consumption,” expressed Tushar Shah from International W a t e r Management Institute. It is alarming that almost 40 percent of sewage treatment capacity of the country is extended to just two cities i.e. Delhi and Mumbai. The country has approximately 302 tier I cities and 467 tier II towns, which do not have existing sewage treatment facilities. Out of the 21 percent of sewage streamed through treatment facilities in type B towns, only 60 percent in actuality meets the set standards.

open drains and storm water drains, ending up polluting the open water sources and groundwater sources. Sunita Narain, Director General, CSE, further added, “Close to half of the population residing in the urban areas of India depends on groundwater resources for daily household activities like cooking, drinking, among others. The usage of such polluted groundwater makes

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The Track to

Hygiene Education

The rampant lack of cleanliness and hygiene in our society is a huge cause of concern. From unclean public toilets to heaps of untreated waste scattered on streets, from unhygienic working conditions in industries to unkempt hotels, from shocking eating and utensil washing conditions in roadside eateries to lack of even the basic sanitation facilities in a plethora of schools and hospitals, the country seems to be in a mess, at least literally if not metaphorically. Not content with polluting our once upon a time pristine rivers and mountains, we have also scattered litter near our famous monuments. One can say these monuments are as much a part of our heritage as our callous attitude towards basic sanitation. Take the case of our Railways, which is considered the life line of India. Despite some green initiatives, ensuring impeccable cleanliness in stations as well as for travelling passengers inside the coaches still remains a distant dream. Unclean toilets in Indian airports are also not unheard of in news reports. In fact, there are very few facets in India where one can find spotless cleanliness and hygiene. Here Swarnendu Biswas attempts to explore the lack of sanitation and hygiene in two of our fundamental needs — Indian Railways and schools — while attempting to find its root causes and remedies.


Mar-Apr ’13



eing a frequent traveller in trains like millions of other common Indians, on innumerable occasions I have encountered the stench of its unabashedly unclean toilets. In fact, toilets in Indian Railways’ coaches are not only unclean but very often they lack even water and soaps. This is one of the many issues that haven’t changed in India, despite the advances of globalisation, and the country’s graduation towards a knowledge economy.

Trained to Neglect The walkways near the seats of the coaches are often strewn with varied forms of litter that range from plastic bottles to dispensable outer covering of groundnuts. Scurrying rats in those walkways are not uncommon sights either. In many of my harrowing travels, I have seen walls of the coaches stained with dried beetle leaf juices, and had to locate hard to find a bin, which in most cases seemed to literally burst with garbage. In the recent past, a sur vey conducted by a research firm named Market Xcel covering 12,000 respondents revealed that unclean

toilets were the biggest concern among frequent travellers on Indian Railways, followed by unclean coaches. However, our Indian Railways is not at all partial to its passengers in this regard. The visitors to railway stations in the country are also frequently welcomed by the abundance or rather the omnipresence of litter, comprising paper cups, snack food packets, plastic bottles, paper, human waste, etc. on either side of the tracks of the stations. These reflections of combined callousness by authorities and people at large can greatly compromise the hygiene of people, particularly from whom railway stations are daily workplaces. But most surprising is the casual nonchalance of the passengers at coaches and passengers/visitors to the railway stations at large to all these ‘wonderful vignettes,’ who seem to be not only totally immune to the overbearing unclean and unhygienic atmosphere as they animatedly discuss the future of the nation, or of Sachin Tendulkar, but they are often seen to be proactive contributors to this scenario too. So you cannot give all the credit to our Railway authorities to our resilience towards filth during travels; our people too play their role towards it as they casually flung the plastic bottles on the railway tracks without a second thought.

Housekeeping Onboard However, lately there have been some praiseworthy initiatives by the Indian Railways to address the cleanliness and hygiene issues. The present initiative of introducing trained on-board housekeeping staff on trains in a big way can check the menace of litter, beetle leaf stains and pests to a significant extent. Presently and thankfully, on-board housekeeping service has been prescribed across all Rajdhani, Shatabdi, Duranto and other important long distance mail/express trains. Indian Railways has identified

Mar-Apr ’13

535 trains for providing OBHS services. This scheme has already been introduced on 335 pairs of trains. As part of on-board housekeeping, green pest management should be the preferred option across trains, which should be introduced on an emergency basis This should be supplemented by extensive mechanised cleaning and mechanised laundry, which can increase cleaning efficiency while curtailing the cost of cleaning operations. By October 2012, at 16 locations mechanised laundries were set up by the Indian Railways.

The Need for Bio-toilets At the same time, the Railways recent initiative of imposing fines on those who litter on railway premises is praiseworthy, though it should have come two decades before. The toilet droppings in railway tracks are a major cause of rail corrosion. One of the effective ways of addressing the mess of human excreta strewn on tracks is of course construction of more and more bio-toilets in rail’s coaches, and in this regard, the South East Central Railway (SECR)’s plans to introduce and maintain more bio-toilets in trains is praiseworthy. However, by April 2013, SECR had bio toilets in only 14 coaches, and 12 of these coaches were air-conditioned. Here it deserves a mention that Indian Railways has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) for jointly developing bio-toilets. By March 2013, a total number of 1563 biotoilets were installed in coaches for field trials. It has been planned to convert the coach toilets across Indian Railways with these biotoilets after the success of the trials. “ W hile it would be Indian Railways’ endeavour to install environment friendly toilets/biotoilets in all its passenger coaches (new as well as existing) at the earliest, the time frame for their full scale deployment cannot be forecast with reasonable accuracy as it will depend upon the changes/ modifications necessitated from




a non-compromising attitude towards cleanliness. Even a report in March 2013 pointed out that Derek O’ Brien, the MP of Trinamool Congress, complained that the newly opened terminal at Kolkata airport had filthy toilets with many parts of the terminal being dirty. I am not sure whether the culture of cleanliness has seeped into the staff of the Kolkata

2012, published by an NGO named Pratham, 9.5 percent schools of rural Jharkhand lacked even drinking water facility and 12.5 percent of them did have this facility but without the availability of drinking water. Here it deser ves a mention that ASER is the largest annual household survey of children in rural India that focuses on the status of schooling and basic learning. ASER 2012 reached 567 districts, more

time to time based on the feedback on its performance, outcome of the fitment trials, exigency of their usage pattern and other service conditions,” quoted a recent release of the Press Information Bureau. Indian Railways’ ambitious drive to have bio-toilets in all its coaches may be translated into a welcome reality in the not very distant future years, but unless the railway authorities and people can collectively change their ingrained attitude towards keeping our Railways clean, the ground realties would not experience a sea change for the better.

airport all of a sudden, within this one month.

Mess Before You Fly The shrill resonance of our c o l l e c t i v e t o l e r a n c e t ow a r d s unhygienic conditions is also not unheard of in our airports, where people fork out thousands of rupees for travelling. Only last year, a report of a leading daily highlighted the pathetic condition of toilets in Chennai’s airport. Strewn tissues inside the toilets, overflowing dustbins, frequent malfunctioning of soap dispensers, and stench were featured among the characteristics of Chennai airport, according to a report which surfaced in September 2012. I was disappointed to see that at the Kolkata airport, stinking toilets, overflowing waste bins, and an unkempt lounge were not uncommon features even in January of this year, when I happened to land at my home town for a business cum leisure trip. In this airport, trade unionism frequently overrides the emergence of

Unhygienic Education If Railways help transport us to our destinations, schools help transport our future generations to new knowledge destinations. Schools are the edifices of our graduation towards a knowledge economy, but sadly a plethora of these cradles of learning are in a terrible shape, at least as far as their clean & hygiene requirements go. This situation is more appalling in rural areas. According to Annual Status of Education Report 2012, only 38.2 percent of the schools in the rural areas of Andhra Pradesh did have toilets that the girl students can use. It is alarming that almost one third of the schools in the rural areas of the state (32.6 percent) were not equipped with separate toilet facilities for their girl students. However, this pathetic situation is not germane to Andhra Pradesh only. According to the same Annual Status of Education Report (ASER)

than 16,000 villages, covered nearly 3.3 lakh households and about 6 lakh children. A total of 14,591 schools were visited during ASER 2012. It is no less shocking that according to ASER 2012, 16.4 percent schools in the rural areas of Jharkhand were not endowed with even toilet facilities. According to the report, only 37 percent of schools in rural areas of Jharkhand had usable toilets. According to the study, among the schools in rural Jharkhand having toilet facilities, around 25.3 percent schools did not have separate provision of toilets for girls. Moreover, only 32 percent of the girls’ toilets in the schools across rural Jharkhand could be used. In fact, toilets without water facilities are common features of Indian schools, in both rural and urban areas. Even a developed state like Maharshtra doesn’t fare much better as far as school sanitation goes. According to the same survey conducted by Pratham, it was found that almost 30 percent schools of rural

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COVER S T O R Y Maharasthra were operating without drinking water. The comprehensive survey unearthed that 40.8 percent of the schools located in the rural areas of this industrialised state had unusable toilets. Though these figures pertain to 2012, but it is highly unlikely that these shameful statistics on India’s school sanitation has improved much in these few months. Overall, only 73 percent of all schools visited by the survey across the country had availability of drinking water. Though according to the study, the proportion of schools with useable toilets in rural India did increase from 47.2 percent in 2010 to 56.5 percent in 2012, but despite the impressive enhancement in this direction within two years, the percentage of schools with usable toilets in the country is simply pathetic. Approximately 80 percent of schools visited by the survey across rural India were found to have separate provision for girls’ toilets. This was followed by another not so heartening report in the end March of this year, where it was revealed that almost 225 schools in Jammu region were functioning without proper toilet facilities and their students had to do with temporary arrangements. Even till September 2011, out of 11,429 government schools in the Jammu division, 7,576 didn’t have toilet facilities for students. Even till the later half of 2011, out of 296 Government High Schools (upto 12th standard) in Jammu, 63 were deprived of toilet facilities. We can see from these frightening figures that opting for education can become a great health risk for millions of students and for girl students at puberty age, this decision to gain education can come with an added burden of embarrassment, thereby forcing many of them into unfortunate dropouts. It is a well-known fact that lack of usable toilets is one of the reasons behind girl school students’ high drop out rate. Can we afford such a huge loss of potential human resource for our future, only because of the gross state apathy towards hygienic considerations? Recognising both the key


significance of sanitation and the role of students as agents of change, the Central Board of Secondary Education in collaboration with Ministr y of Human Resource Development, Ministry of Urban Development, and GIZ has launched the National School Sanitation Initiative in 2009. The programme has gained momentum, over the years. Sanitation rating has been introduced and CBSE mandates all schools to get their ratings done. However, it is reflection of the sorry state of school sanitation in India that in the last year, only six out of the 886 schools, which applied for online rating of the sanitation facilities, got the green category rating by the National School Sanitation Initiative (NSSI). Green category rating is the highest rating given by National School Sanitation Initiative. It is not only the underprivileged students in rural India who have to suffer from this gross neglect by authorities. Even in a noted public school in East Delhi, which charges a hefty fee of approximately Rs.5000 per month per student, I have come across some students who had faced water crisis and unavailability of soaps during their visits to toilets.

The Necessary and Sufficient However, the appalling lack of school sanitation doesn’t seem strange in a country where more than 60 percent of the population has to defecate in the open and where public toilets can make you puke, and where in this advanced cyber age women in rural India have to trudge miles to bring potable water. Where still basic feminine hygiene is a luxury for a majority of women in the country. The root causes for the sorry state of hygiene in our rails and schools can be attributed to the lack of comprehensive sanitation infrastructure stemming from state apathy towards hygiene of the society at large, but it also stems from our own collective tolerance towards filth or rather our very casual attitude towards perpetuating an unhygienic culture. Therefore firstly we must change the attitude of the society. I think the

need to initiate this unhealthy situation in schools should begin with parents. The parents from all sections of the society should take a concerted action against the schools where their children have to suffer from lack of drinking water or proper toilet facilities, and in this regard conscientious NGOs can mobilise their power. The powerful resonance of their protests is sure to be heard by the authorities and thereby make them wake up and take corrective action to rectify the sorry state of affairs. Yes, this step is necessary, but not sufficient. If we do not want to percolate the ongoing culture of callousness towards cleanliness to seep into our future generations, not only we have to provide the schools with comprehensive sanitation infrastructure but also have to provide trained housekeeping staff for maintenance and upkeep of those infrastructure.This initiative should not be limited to the schools in metros but should extend to schools languishing in underserved rural areas. Yes, I know the idea looks unabashedly romantic and optimistic but it can be pragmatic too if our governments (both Centre and the states), and the housekeeping industry at large come forward in a concerted endeavour to address this issue. Government could bear the costs, and the housekeeping industry would lower their profit margins for a good cause so that there is not too much burden on the state exchequer, and this may help the schools get their much needed cleanliness. It is the duty of our government and the industry to see that all our schools are equipped with basic sanitation infrastructure and have trained housekeeping personnel to maintain those infrastructure, and they should direct a concerted endeavour towards actualising this dream. At the same time, the lowering profit margins for the housekeeping industry could be compensated by the huge volumes of output to a great extent. If the governments and the industry are reluctant to take the necessary initiative in this regard, we the people must force them to take actions, because our children’s health and hygiene is at stake. ■

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The Right Choice of Equipment By Anil Nair


utomatic cleaning machines available in the market are endowed with lots of features, which can influence the cleaning efficiency and overall productivity of the housekeeping process. However, their inefficient usage can derive negative results too. Similarly, the level of skills found among housekeeping personnel in India is also quite good. However, to achieve the optimum productivity and profitability in housekeeping, ‘the man and machine’ combination has to be optimised. Best of the machines and the skilled personnel in isolation can often deliver poor results and land you in disappointment. The skill of the user lies in choosing the right equipment, keeping in account of the job requirement and the budget. Here budget does not mean the initial investment alone. It should cover the operating costs as well, on the basis of the limitation and efficiency of the equipments to perform the job to the satisfaction of the operator and the end client. For example, in the case of selecting a floor scrubber drier equipment, the basic things to be looked for are — the total area to be cleaned, type of the surfaces to be cleaned, type of soil, soiling frequency and site conditions, frequency of cleaning required, time available for cleaning, accessibility of the entire area to be cleaned, and the reach of the equipment. Practical coverage of the equipment (not theoretical coverage), dump-andfill cycle of the machine, scrubbing width which can be covered during every pass of the machine should also be looked into. It is always prudent to choose a machine which is more versatile or is adept to perform multiple functions.


Succinctly, the eventual potential requirement from a cleaning machine is to reduce the overall cleaning time and cost, and still get the best results. Of course, it requires skillful considerations while choosing the right housekeeping equipment.

Size Does Matter Choosing the right size of the equipment is very important. Normally housekeeping operators prefer smaller equipments for easy maneuverability and low initial investments. It also helps in easy accessibility in many areas. However, smaller machines have their limitations like smaller scrubbing path, smaller solution tank, smaller retriever tank, which together can affect the over all productivity of housekeeping operations adversely. There is no denying the fact that smaller cleaning machines are easy to use but the smaller solution and retriever tank which needs to be emptied and refilled much frequently may lead to reduced productivity. Here it deserves a mention that using a machine with the r ight scr ubbing width alone can increase the productivity and reduce the time and labour cost. Initial expenses may be slightly higher for a larger machine but the same is expected

to be covered over a period of time, in the way of savings from time and labour cost as mentioned above. However, that does not mean that an Executive Housekeeper needs to choose only large machines. The layout of the site along with the maneuverability and accessibility of the machine within that site also need to be considered while deciding the right housekeeping equipment or model.

Find Your Type Besides the size of the machines, the type of housekeeping equipments w h i c h need to be employed should be carefully thought upon, and regarding this the initial investment incurred should not be the only decisive factor brought into introspection. It should often depend upon the cleaning method or cleaning program that the housekeeper adheres to. Fo r e x a m p l e , r i d e on machines are always expensive than traditional walk behind machines. But the productivity of a ride-on machine and its operator is generally three to four times higher than the corresponding walk behind machines. This means purchasing decisions in favour of ride-on machines over walk behind machines can entail saving on time and labour cost. Over a

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period of time, this cost saving knocks off the additional initial investment made. After that, the better and more consistent productivity comes as the bonus. Thus choosing a ride-on machine over a traditional walk behind machine would be still more economical on a long-term basis. Similarly, for ensuring high mobility and productivity, battery powered equipments are generally the right choice. Battery powered equipments comes with on-board charger and detachable charger. Both have their advantages and disadvantages. If it is a large work area that needs to be cleaned and the cleaning time is much more than the life of a fully charged battery, it is better to opt for an equipment with detachable chargers which will free the machines while the stand by battery is in charging mode. Conversely, if the daily cleaning time is much lesser than the life of a fully charged battery and the area to be covered is widespread, it is better to opt for a machine with on-board charger which will give you the flexibility to charge the machine from multiple locations rather than coming back to the base station for recharging.

Other Factors Besides the type or size of the equipment, there are various other associated factors to be considered for finding the right equipment for fostering efficient housekeeping solutions. The noise level that a housekeeping equipment generates also calls for consideration in its selection. Low noise level is always the preferred option. Be it a vacuum cleaner or an auto scrubber, its reduced noise level allows you to work with it even during your client’s working hours. Thus an equipment with low noise level facilitates you to optimise your cleaning schedule. Equipments which offer tools free maintenance (user level maintenance) is the most operator friendly equipment. Easy daily maintenance by the user ensures lesser break down of the machine, longer life of the machine and high productivity of the equipment. Moreover, equipments with controlled automatic dosing system save on the cleaning chemical and water, and still can get you the desired results. Equipments which can do a variety

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of tasks like scrubbing, buffing and carpet shampooing are intelligent investments. There are carpet extractor machines which can be used as hard floor scrubber driers too by changing some basic accessories at the user level. High-pressure cleaners which can wash, scrub, and disinfect with steam are other examples for versatile cleaning operations of rest rooms and critical areas in a hospital property. Overall, a housekeeping team equipped with the most cost-effective and productive cleaning equipments and cleaning program ensures you high return on investment, considerable savings in labour cost and consistent profits. For this choose the right partners and just not the equipment vendors, who will study your cleaning requirement and suggest you the right cleaning program with the right equipment configuration. Compare the initial investments and recurring savings in terms of time, labour cost, chemical savings, energy saving, consistency in result, etc. Remember, each second saved a day accumulates to days, weeks and months, which directly translates to the money you have saved for doing an intelligent job or making a wise decision.

Manpower and Service However, simply having the best of machines or the most suitable of machines would not yield the desired quality and productivity in housekeeping operations, unless the same machines are manned by the right personnel. Operator training is perhaps the most important factor in achieving optimum cleaning efficiency from your cleaning team. Similarly, one can buy the most expensive and state-of-the art equipment in today from any part of the world, but what is one’s local back up support, what is the quality of the after sales support, and who is one’s local vendor are pertinent questions whose clear answers should come ahead of one’s purchase. After spending a fortune on the latest technology/equipment you shouldn’t end with operational impediments. It is wise to partner with the best equipment vendor available who can provide your team with the support it needs. — The Author is the Senior Sector Manager - BSC, Commercial and Retail, JohnsonDiversey India Pvt. Ltd.



Housekeeping in Hotels and Healthcare

Talk about cleanliness of a place and you immediately think about housekeeping. Be it a public garden or a mall housekeeping is an essential element to keep the premises clean. Two of the sectors that have to depend a great deal on housekeeping are the hospitality and healthcare. While a majority of the hotels and healthcare facilities have in-house set up for keeping the places spic and span, several of them depend on outsourcing. Even those which have in-house facilities outsource some of the housekeeping services like laundering, etc. Ashok Malkani discusses about the various facets of the housekeeping requirements of the hotel and healthcare sector. This information may help the entrepreneur entering the housekeeping segment to serve these sectors efficiently.


ousekeeping is an essential service for public places like malls, cinemas and even gardens and public utility areas. Private buildings also make use of housekeeping services. Two of the major areas in India for housekeeping are hospitality and healthcare. Hospitals and hotels are two main employers of the housekeeping sector. “Most hotels have their own housekeeping departments for


regular work like keeping the rooms clean but rely on outside help for laundering, window cleaning and other specialised cleaning services,” said an Assistant Housekeeping Manager of a renowned hotel in Mumbai.

Clean Sweep to Profits Housekeeping is a crucial area of hotel operations. The role of housekeeping in hotels is wide and varied, and involves keeping the

property clean, safe and comfortable for the guests. The housekeepers in hotels are not only involved in cleaning the rooms, bathrooms and public areas, and ensuring that the bathrooms are well stocked with toiletries, etc. but also in doing the laundry and assisting in the security concerns of the hotels. Housekeeping staff must ensure that besides the rooms and restrooms of the hotels, their lobbies, ballrooms, gyms, and other public spaces must remain spic and span. Not only the floors and carpets, but the windows of a high-end hotel should be kept spotless and in this regard housekeeping does play a significant role. The housekeeping departments of the hotels are also responsible for monitoring of cleaning and linen supplies, so that there is no shortage and wastage of these items during housekeeping operations. Often special guest requests for irons, rollway beds, hairdryers and extra bath linens may also be catered to by the housekeeping department of the hotel concerned. Without an efficient housekeeping staff, the hotel guests wouldn’t have clean rooms waiting for them after

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HOUSEKEEPING a tired day, the lobby would be unkempt, the restrooms would be dirty, the furniture would be dusty, and the security concerns of the hotels may also be compromised. There is no denying the fact that without the backup of good housekeeping, the guest visits and hence the bottom lines of the hotels have a high degree of chance to get severely affected over a period of time. Similarly, great housekeeping operations can greatly facilitate in enhancing the number of repeat visits and hence profits of the hotel concerned. Cleanliness is the first priority of the hotel’s housekeeping operations because the guests rate the hotel on its hygiene, sanitation and spotlessness. Keeping the hotel clean and visually attractive heightens the impact of its facilities, and attracts guests and hence business. On the other hand, guests are likely to avoid an unclean hotel. Cleanliness across all the areas of the hotels is necessary for good and repeat business. A recent survey showed 63 percent travellers rated cleanliness and appearance as their first priority in their choice of hotels. Thus the most important aim of good housekeeping, which can be construed as the backbone of the hospitality industry, is to provide and maintain a clean environment.

The Executive Role But besides maintaining cleanliness there are other priorities in housekeeping across hotels. Housekeeping in hotels should ensure that its operations, besides ensuring impeccable cleanliness, is also facilitative towards creation of a comfortable, safe and aesthetically appealing environment or rather invironment within the hotels. For the Executive Housekeeper in a hotel, who generally leads the housekeeping department in the hospitality sector, the job is not simple. In fact, it can be highly challenging. In smaller hospitality properties, she/he reports directly to the General Manager, whereas in larger properties, she/he may report to the Rooms Division Manager. For the Executive Housekeeper, ensuring that impeccable cleanliness across the hotel is maintained

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is not the only job. The role of the Executive Housekeeper or Housekeeping Manager includes planning budgets for housekeeping, managing and motivating the housekeeping personnel working under her/him, not only ensuring efficiency of the housekeeping staff but also endeavouring to enhance the efficiency of the housekeeping staff working under her/him, identifying cleaning needs, purchasing optimum supplies and coordinating with other departments in order to facilitate top-of-the-line guest service, and consequently help towards enduring guest satisfaction. Besides these challenges, she/he may also have the responsibility of reducing waste and minimising environmental affects through housekeeping operations, especially if the property concerned is an ecofriendly hospitality property. Yes, reduction of waste and minimising environmental affects can also come under the purview of housekeeping in hospitality, in this new age. In this regard, housekeeping staff of the hotels should be trained to become more energy-efficient in their dayto-day work.

Health Needs Housekeeping The role of housekeeping in hospitals and other healthcare facilities cannot be over emphasised. In fact, the difference between good and bad housekeeping in hospitals can make a difference between life and death. Moreover, India’s huge potential in medical tourism can be properly harnessed only if housekeeping services in our high-end hospitals match these hospitals’ doctors and facilities. For international quality healthcare is not the product of great doctors and great medical facilities only, their combined effect must also be supplemented by high standard of housekeeping services in order to make international quality healthcare a reality. Housekeeping in hospitals is primarily involved in ensuring or at least facilitating a clean and hygienic environment in hospitals, so that the health of patients, visitors,

medical practitioners and workers are being safeguarded from the invasion of germs. Besides helping to safeguard them from a plethora of microorganisms which are likely to emerge within hospital premises, the housekeeping in hospitals is also engaged in providing a pleasant and conducive atmosphere for the patients and the staff. The infection-free and comfortable environment that the housekeeping can help provide the patients can facilitate their speedy recovery, and hence contribute towards the image and business of the hospitals in a big way. Good quality of housekeeping in hospitals not only helps in restoring the health of the patients and providing them with the requisite comfort during their stay in the hospitals, but can also boost their morale.

The Challenges of Treating Biomedical Waste Successful tackling of biomedical waste is one of the most important challenges of housekeeping in hospitals. Any waste which is generated during diagnosis, treatment or immunisation of human beings or animals, or in research activities pertaining to diagnosis, treatment or immunisation of human beings



Responsibilities of Housekeeping in Hotels


A detailed list of the responsibilities of the housekeeping department in hotels can be summed up. It includes: • Ensuring an impeccable standard of cleanliness in all those areas of the hotel, which come under the concerned housekeeping department’s purview. • Catering to the laundry requirement of the in-house staff by way of ensuring clean linen and clean uniform for the staff and also meeting the laundry requirement of the guests. Also maintaining these items’ inventory. • Coordinating with the purchase department to ensure that adequate guest supplies, cleaning agents, linen, carpets and housekeeping equipments are there to manage the housekeeping department. • To assist in the maintenance of

the property. • Facilitating towards reduction in wastage and enhancing the environment friendliness of the hotel. • Dealing with lost and found articles. • Coordinating the renovation of the property when required, in consultation with the management and the interior designer/s. • Keeping a watch on any suspicious guest or luggage and report about it to the concerned personnel/department. Also ensuring that safety and security regulations are appraised to all the staff of various departments of the hotel. • Providing and maintaining the floral decorations and landscaped areas of the hotel.

or animals or during production and testing of biologicals, can be termed as biomedical waste. Waste produced in the course of healthcare activities can carry a higher potential for infection and injury than any other type of waste. For example, used syringes and waste organs can be potentially and lethally contagious, and they should be disposed with utmost care. Consequently, unscientific disposal of biomedical waste can facilitate a host of communicable diseases, both of chronic and lethal proportions. However, that is not to say that all biomedical waste generated in hospitals must necessarily be hazardous in nature. Biomedical waste can be both bio hazardous and non hazardous in nature. Noninfected plastic, cardboard, paper can be examples of non hazardous biomedical waste, whereas radioactive waste, discarded glass, sharps such as used needles, infusion sets, scalpels, knives, blades, broken glass, etc., liquid waste, chemical waste are some

of the examples of bio hazardous waste. Almost 75-90 percent of bio-medical waste is non hazardous in nature. They are as potentially harmful as normal municipal waste. But some of the bio hazardous biomedical waste can be extremely harmful; much more than municipal waste. R e c e n t l y, t h e M i n i s t r y o f Environment and Forests has revised the Bio Medical Waste (Management and Handling) Rules. This new set of rules, now known as Bio-Medical Waste (Management and Handling) Rules, 2011 has replaced the earlier Bio-Medical Waste (Management and Handling) Rules, 1998. The new version is thankfully more comprehensive and stringent. The Bio-Medical Waste (Management and Handling) Rules, 2011 applies to all persons who generate, collect, receive, store, transport, treat, dispose or handle biomedical waste in any form. Under the revised legislation, every occupier generating biomedical

waste irrespective of the quantum of wastes, has come under the ambit of this law and requires to obtain authorisation from the prescribed authority. In the earlier version of the law, only occupiers with more than 1000 beds were required to obtain authorisation. Moreover, under the revised law, the duties of the operator are being listed, which was not there in the Bio-Medical Waste(Management and Handling) Rules, 1998.The categories of biomedical waste in the Bio-Medical Waste (Management and Handling) Rules, 2011 have been reduced to eight from 10 in the earlier version of the legislation. Furthermore, under the revised legislation, the treatment and disposal of biomedical waste has been made compulsor y for all the healthcare establishments, whereas in the earlier version of the legislation, this stipulation was restricted to those healthcare establishments which were equipped with more than 1000 beds. The housekeeping staff should keep in the mind the new rules while framing their biomedical waste disposal policies. Reports of haphazard manner of disposing biomedical waste are the cause for concern. Despite the legislation, the treatment of biomedical waste in India is dismal. Almost 28 percent of biomedical waste in the countr y remains untreated, which is an alarming figure, considering the potentially dangerous elements that some forms of biomedical waste can have. In Mumbai, some time ago, a reputed hospital was found dumping this potentially hazardous waste in municipal waste bins outside the hospital. According to a recent finding by Pune Municipal Corporation, over 75 percent of the clinics of Pune do not use any scientific disposal method for their biomedical waste and simply dump them. However, the nursing homes and hospitals of the city fare better. Only 15 percent of them were seen flouting norms of biomedical waste disposal. According to PMC, over 6,000 clinics and 107 nursing homes/hospitals of the city have not

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HOUSEKEEPING been adhering to scientific methods of disposal of their biomedical waste for many years. This is not to say that hospitals and clinics of all other cities of India have good bio-medical waste disposal process. In fact, improper disposal of biomedical waste is a cause of concern in the country. According to another recent news report, approximately 150 nursing homes and hospitals in Ranchi are not equipped with proper biomedical waste disposal systems. Besides proper treatment and disposal of biomedical waste, housekeeping in hospitals and other healthcare facilities should also ensure adequate pest management and laundry facilities, so that possibilities of infection are reduced to a minimum. Regular cleaning of surfaces and air with appropriate disinfectants, and stringently maintaining hand hygiene guidelines for all patients, visitors and hospital staff, fogging the operation theatres and rooms

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where infected patients are being admitted, maintaining the exacting standards of cleanliness and hygiene of clean rooms and other critical care areas are only some of the important day-to-day hygienic measures that housekeeping staff in hospitals and other healthcare establishments must adhere to.

The Right Combination Besides trained manpower with the right attitude, selecting the most appropriate equipments for a particular housekeeping job can also greatly facilitate housekeeping in hotels and healthcare establishments. Though only 5-10 percent of the overall cost incurred on cleaning is accounted for by cleaning equipment and agents, selecting the ideal equipment plays a major role in the cleaning process. “There will often be several ways of carrying out any particular cleaning task and different types of equipment can be employed for it. It is the Executive

Housekeeper’s responsibility to select the most appropriate piece of equipment according to the requirement,” explained Meenal Shimpi, Executive Housekeeper, Hotel Shantai, Pune. The right choice of cleaning equipment could translate in saving costs, reducing fatigue and enhancing productivity at the same time. O verall, the secret of good housekeeping in hotels, hospitals and other healthcare establishments is the proper amalgamation of manpower, management vision and equipments. If one of these is not up to the mark, international quality of housekeeping cannot be achieved. It should be remembered that in these times of competition, the back up of international quality hospitality solutions is needed to make our hospitality and healthcare sector reach their true potential. Therefore selecting the right machine and the right manpower for a given type of housekeeping process is very crucial. ■



Personal Care Enters a

Healthy Age By Swarnendu Biswas


ndia is tr ul y a land of contrasts, whose reflections are also felt in personal hygiene segment in a glaring manner. On the one hand, we have more than more than 60 percent of India without toilet facilities, and this appalling scenario is supplemented with a plethora of

thoroughly unclean toilets dotting our roads, which are often characterised by the lack of often even the basic facilities. On the other hand nowadays we are seeing a wide range of highend soaps, detergents, dishwashing liquids, and floor cleaners loaded with impressive hygienic properties. Along with open defecation and soiled public toilets, antibacterial cleaning products have also emerged as part of daily hygiene routines of a significant section of our population, across homes, workplaces and hospitals. Indian consumers are attracted by the antibacterial cleaning products to eliminate germs from their homes, offices, hospitality properties, healthcare facilities among others, and thereby safeguard their and other inmates/guests/patients/ visitors of those properties health and well-being.

A Soapy Affair In fact, the personal hygiene products have come of age in India, which can greatly benefit the healthcare and hospitality industry in the bear future. Then


there is Dettol No-Touch Handwash system which uses advanced no touch technology to give a healthy hand wash experience. This can be easily construed as an innovative product breakthrough in the realm of hand hygiene. The No-Touch dispenser automatically senses your hands and dispenses an adequate amount of liquid soap to give you a great hand washing experience, thereby helping you to promote a healthy lifestyle without exerting yourself. Its potential of application in hotel and hospital’s washrooms and even in our homes could be immense. Dettol Herbal Anti-Bacterial Soap, Dettol Anti-Bacterial Skincare Soap, and Dettol Anti-Bacterial Cool Soap are other top-notch washroom hygiene products from Dettol. The According to the manufacturer, the Dettol Herbal Anti-bacterial Soap is tested to be effective against E.Coli, S.aureus, Salmonella, and H1N1 strain of influenza A. In the recent past, Dettol has also made foray

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CLEANING into the body wash segment. Its new body wash range is available in three variants, accompanying different price ranges. Lifebuoy Clini-Care 10, endowed with Lifebuoy ’s breakthrough technology Activ Naturol Shield, is also extremely potent in germ protection and skin care. This soap also checks the invasion of numerous infectious disease causing viruses. Of course, Lifebuoy and Dettol are the obvious brand choices for maintaining good personal hygiene, but there are many more flooding the current market scenario. Himalaya Herbals’ Refreshing Cucumber Soap, which is ideal for rejuvenating and refreshing your skin is one such personal hygiene option. Blended together with the extracts of nut grass, turmeric, cucumber and coconut oil, the soap can tone your skin, leaving it soothed, nourished and moisturised. Here it deserves a mention that nut grass is used in treating skin related ailments like scabies and eczema and helps to relieve itching, and also soothes and moisturises the skin. Turmeric has been used as an antiseptic for centuries. Cucumber is an excellent toner as it quickly tightens open pores. Besides that,

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the abundance of antioxidants and silica in cucumber rejuvenate the skin and leave it feeling soft and smooth. Coconut oil also has beneficial properties. It helps in treating various skin conditions including psoriasis, dermatitis and eczema. Tri Activ anti-bacterial soap and Tri Activ hand sanitiser from P iramal Healthcare also have the potential to revolutionise our washroom cleanliness, especially across hospitals. According to the company, Tri Activ antibacterial soap is endowed with triclosan which helps tackle both grampositive and gram-negative bacteria. If this bacterial growth goes unchecked, it can cause problems such as skin/ throat infections, diarrhea, typhoid and pneumonia. Using this soap can help one to remain active and fresh throughout the day. At the same time, the soap is gentle on the skin. Piramal has also come up with Tetmosol, which is a monosulfiram based medicated soap that fights higher order skin problems like scabies, urticaria, itching and rashes. It can be also used everyday as a bathing soap to prevent these problems from occurring as well. Over the last several years, the brand has been the trusted choice for many across India and beyond. Neem, which is naturally endowed with anti-bacterial properties, has been used across households through millennia for the purpose of skin care.

N e e m is a disinfecting, antiseptic and prevents the invasion of bacteria. This perennial health panacea has been gaining momentum in the cleaning segment of post-modern India. Vatika DermoViva Neem soap facilitates to deep-cleanse your skin while its astringent properties tone and nourish it. This endows the skin with a healthy look and glow. Sodium Palmate, Sodium Palm Kernelate, Sodium Chloride, glycerin, aqua, Tetrasodium Etidronate, Tetrasodium EDTA, coconut acid, neem extract, rosemary leaf oil are some of the ingredients of this product. Then there is Swastik Neem Soap from Godrej which has more than 20 percent of pure neem oil. Extraction of olive oil, coconut, avocado, shea butter, rosemary and camphor, are


CLEANING which is recommended by India Medical Association, also claims to kill 99.9 percent of germs, without soap or water. Piramal Healthcare’s TriActiv hand sanitiser also claims to decimate 99.9 percent of gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria without the use of water.

some other natural ingredients in the soap. It also has jojoba. This 100 percent natural soap is devoid of any animal ingredient and artificial preservative. However, this trend of super healthy soaps with natural ingredients is not strictly a new phenomenon. Chandrika Ayurvedic Soap has been there since 1940, when Ayurvedic products were not in fashion. This soap constitutes of purified coconut oil, sandalwood oil, patchouli oil, lime peel oil, orange oil, hydnocarpus oil and wild ginger, and is devoid of animal products. Chandrika Ayurvedic Soap puts nature to work at caring for your skin.

A Sanitising Effect The healthy soaps are complemented by high-end hand sanitisers too, in the market. Godrej Protekt Instant Hand Sanitiser, with its revolutionary Insta Sanitize technology, does make the highly impressive claim to eliminate 99.99 percent of the most common germs that may cause illness, in 15 seconds flat. It is a fast, effective, hygienic alternative to washing hands when soap and water are not available. It can be an apt hygienic solution in many schools and public toilets, where both soap and water are often in scarcity. Available in two sizes, Dettol’s new-age Instant Hand Sanitiser,


The Emerging Controversy There are a plethora of such top-notch personal hygiene products flooding the Indian market, which many would think to have the potential to give a fillip to washroom hygiene in India, especially across hotels and hospitals, provided the hospitality and healthcare industry take the initiative to stock their toilets with such products on a continuous basis. However, this popular opinion is challenged in the recent times. Recently some debates have surfaced over the beneficial usage of antibacterial products. There is a current of train of thought which has logic to believe that overuse of antibacterial products in cleaning solutions can do more harm than good. The recent findings of Consumer Education & Research Society (CERS), a leading consumer rights organisation in the country, and its international partner organisation CHOICE, Australia, have revealed some surprising facts about antibacterials. The investigation has revealed that while antibacterial soaps and cleansers are needed in healthcare set-ups like clinics and hospitals; they provide little benefit in our homes, and neither do antibacterials distinguish between harmful and beneficial bacteria. The findings stated that the overuse of such

products can actually destroy the concentration of beneficial bacteria, which is vital for preserving human health. The reputation of triclosan is also challenged. The findings also unearthed that triclosan – the most common antibacterial ingredient — may be an endocrine disrupter as it interferes with both thyroid and sex hormones. Its widespread use has led to it being detected in human blood and breast milk. Besides the findings of this research, many lawmakers, consumer advocates and scientists across the world have also raised their worries about the safety of triclosan, which has presence in an estimated 75 percent of antibacterial liquid soaps and body washes being sold in the US. The CERS and CHOICE, Australia’s research also found that though most consumer hand sanitisers claim to kill 99.9 percent of germs, but the accuracy of this claim is highly dependent on the ingredients and the application of the

product. So we can say like nothing else in the world, antibacterial cleaning products too are not an unadulterated boon. They can be bane too. But that does not mean we should stop using them. Succinctly, the housekeeping industry can infer that though the use of antibacterial agents in soaps and sanitisers are welcome, and are here to stay, especially in the looming threat of swine flu and bird flu endemics haunting us, but the cleaning products’(which have antibacterial constitutents) usage should be subjected to greater care, and should be done only after a holistic evaluation of their ■ ingredients’ composition.

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Outsourcing to

Tackle Pests


est management is vital for hotels, offices, malls or rather in any facility. Even homes need it. For hospitals, the difference between right pest management solution and its absence can mean the difference between life and death. The outsourcing of pest management is emerging into a trend as many organisations do not find it cost-efficient to maintain a dedicated housekeeping staff. Moreover, many organisations also feel that it is more financially prudent to focus their human resource on their core business or revenue generating activities, and outsource their housekeeping needs (which also include pest management) to firm/s which has/have specialised expertise in it. The job of pest management requires professional expertise and often cannot be handled by untrained persons or regular housekeeping staff of a hotel or an office. However, specialised pest control professionals generally have the requisite expertise or are expected to have the requisite


expertise to check the invasion or fostering the elimination of pests without disturbing the day-to-day work schedule or intimidating or offending the valued guests, clients or the regular staff. The specialised nature of pest management job is also one of the reasons behind i t s o u t s o u rc i n g t o s p e c i a l i s t organisations. However, selecting the right pest management service provider involves consideration of a lot of factors. Pest management is a complex task and the pest control requirements of different organisations/properties/ institutions can also be often very different. Evaluation of the specific nature of pest control that a facility or a property needs and the services offered by the professional pest management service providers should be done in detail before outsourcing pest management. Making the right decision often involves several steps. Firstly, the client should evaluate the pest management requirements for her/his organisation/institution/ property and decide for what part of her/his organisation/property/

institution the pest management is a priority. The client should also ascertain what kind of pest management exercise is apt for her/ his facility/organisation/property. Once the in-house evaluation is completed, the search for the right service provider that could cater to the client’s requirements should begin. Of course gathering information about the expertise and track record of the pest control service provider (unless it is a renowned brand name) is needed before deciding on outsourcing pest management services to it. Whether the service provider specialises in commercial pest control, whether the workers of the pest control organisation are adequately trained to deliver the kind of pest control services which are required by the client, whether the pest management company provides green pest management solutions, how does the service provider respond to an emergency situation are only some of the pertinent questions whose satisfactor y answers should be

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sought by the client before hiring a pest management firm to check or eliminate pests from her/his facility or facilities. Once the relevant background information about a sample of pest control providers who are supposed to be equipped to satisfy the client’s specific pest control requirements are collected through necessary research, the short listing of the service providers needs to be done. It is better to shortlist a number of pest management firms who can cater to the client’s requirements, and then decide upon the right choice after evaluating their price and past performance. During the process of short listing, it is important to ensure that all the service providers who are under consideration have their branch offices in all the cities where the clients require their services. Proximity of at least a branch office of the service provider to the facility could be immensely useful in the times of emergency. Moreover while considering the short-listed firms it is important to understand that the highest charging provider may not be the best one. It is specifically true if you have decided to go for green pest management. What is important here is to understand who is

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offering you the most intelligent solution at the least cost. Invitation to site visits for preparing the proposal should follow only after the short-listing of the service providers. For interacting with the inspecting team, you need to assign a team or a person who/which is not only adept at the job but also possesses excellent communication skill, for sometime a small miscommunication may lead to much change in the design and budget proposal. The interaction in the site tour also offers you to learn a few additional facts about the service providers and their level of commitment to the job. It is also an opportune moment to poke a few previously unasked questions and see if they can provide some additional insights into the approach of integrated pest management. It should be clearly borne in mind that making pest management successful is not possible only with the one-sided effort of the service provider. Cooperation of the people working/ inhabiting the concerned facility is equally important for implementation of enduringly successful pest management strategies. Therefore preparing the premises as per the suggestion of the technicians and making them accessible for treatment and inspection is quite vital in this regard. Therefore in this context, before the final selection, it would be wise of the client if she/he ensures that the pest management firm to which the job would be outsourced also will provide training at regular intervals to her/his in-house staff. This will help the staff to be better equipped to carry the instructions/guidelines of the pest managers. Especially, if the client is thinking of initiating an integrated pest management exercise, she/ he should ensure that the pest management firm to which the job would be outsourced, would be willing and able to provide training at regular intervals to the in-house staff. This is because integrated pest management is more of an enduring habit than a quick solution, and requires ■ regular monitoring.




Laundry Business A

dvancements in laundry technology are welcome realities of our times, which may sound great for the commercial laundry business. However, like bad news, good news too sometimes does not come alone. Every age also brings with it a new set of challenges. For the world grappling with environmental problems, and introducing innovative measures for fighting the threat of global warming, water and energy crisis have become major issues that have affected most business ventures around the world. This emerging environmental crisis has great influence on the laundry


business too. In today’s energy starved world, where cost consciousness is also gaining increasing importance, laundry systems in an outsourced laundry or in in-house laundry need to be highly productive and energy efficient. The operator must understand the need to achieve various goals such as, higher productivity, creating more environment friendly operations, decreasing the number or hours of attendants, and slashing water and utility costs. In today’s times, laundry must deliver high productivity with low operational costs, along with minimum possible

negative environmental fallouts.

Selecting the Right Machine In today’s times, the laundry equipments like the washerextractors, flatwork ironers and drying tumblers should be highly programmable to meet the individual needs of specific markets, including hospitals, hotels, drycleaners, prisons, schools, etc. To source out the commercial laundry equipment having labour and energy saving features, which have now become the priorities, operators should carefully make a cost-benefit analysis of the different brands. In

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order to maximise productivity, one must choose quality commercial laundry equipment that can pave the way for the creation of productive and efficient on-premise and outsourced laundries. The laundry equipment should be spruced with features designed to improve productivity, simplify the wash process and turnout a consistent quality result with each wash. Selecting the right number and type of equipment suitable for your laundry operations is also essential. In the commercial laundry business, one of the most important factors to consider is the choice of the commercial laundry equipment, which can play a deciding role in the commercial laundry operations. The key equipments required for any commercial laundry service are commercial washers, dryers and stacked dryers. The correct choice of these commercial laundry equipments along with proper layout and operations plan can generate tidy and increasing profits. For example, the washers equipped with automatic chemical injection, high-speed extract, and optimum programmability can increase the total productivity and quality of laundry operations. While purchasing commercial laundry equipments, one can find that commercial dryer is an important purchase to go in for. Here are a few considerations you should adhere to while making the buying decision for a commercial dryer. Before purchasing the dryer, carefully ascertain the heat source.

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We must keep in mind that the gas heated machine will produce at a more efficient rate, compared to a steam model. This is so as it costs more to produce steam that heats a steam coil in order to heat the air. On the other hand, a gas machine directly fires up with a heat source and permeates heats into the air. Also take into account of the configurations of the machines as they play crucial role in the workflow of the laundry. Do also consider the price and additional features, which can influence bottom lines for small laundry operations. The improvements in the drying technologies and the presence of a multitude of dryers often make it difficult for one to choose the right dryer for any industry. Therefore it is quite important to understand one’s needs better before making a decision to buy a dryer. Even in the same industry, the need of dryers can be different depending on the production capacity of a facility. However, cost efficiency, durability, and safety measures are perhaps some of the important common parameters that everybody needs to analyse before purchasing a dryer. While envisaging starting on a new laundry operation, besides the commercial equipments one also needs to evaluate the floor plan, which in turn influences the order and placement of various laundry equipments. In this regard, you can take the suggestions of the equipment distributors. They will be of great help as they have dealt with a wide variety of floor plan layouts.

The supplier should provide proper laundry layout specifications, equipment options and ancillary products to meet specific laundry needs. Laundry equipment with improved washing ability, costeffective options for utilities and ancillary items, expertise in proper chemical usage, and topnotch service are the pre-requisites for the supplier. Depending on the setting for which the laundry equipment is intended, there may be special features that are desirable in the equipment to be purchased. For example, larger versions of the stacked washers and dryers found in many institutions may not be preferred in a small or medium sized laundry that has very limited space. Similarly, coin laundries require equipment that is compatible with coin mechanisms. It needs to be mentioned here that a good number of manufacturers of commercial laundry equipment offer machinery that already has coin features in place. The eighties witnessed the advent of the continuous batch processing systems, which are also known as the tunnel washing systems. The modern generation of tunnel washers, if set up and used correctly, are designed to give vastly improved productive economics in situations, where the loads to be processed are substantially high i.e. in the range of about 400kgs/hr. But unfortunately in India, the huge sizes of the tunnel washers have also raised doubts about their maintenance cost and their uses have so far remained very limited. Succinctly, the wide variety of laundry equipments and technologies available nowadays ensures that any facility, from a small property needing to wash towels to the largest hotel with huge quantities of linens that need to be laundered, can now find the right equipment for them. The advent of computer and microprocessor controls in various laundry equipments have revolutionised their performance and dramatically reduced labour cost as well as working hours per employee. ■



Fostering Impeccable

Food Safety By Hemant Kumar Kochar


t should do well for the students aspiring towards a career in restaurant or any other form of food service business to remember that nowadays food safety or food hygiene are gaining crucial importance in this highly competitive business. Rising awareness towards health concerns in the society is responsible for this. Food safety is a discipline, which include handling, preparation and storage of food in ways that prevent food-borne illnesses.

The Scope of Food Safety Food safety pertains to the practices related to food management & cooking which prevent food contamination and food poisoning. In restaurant kitchens, safety & sanitation are essential to keep everyone healthy and injury free. Chefs need to have a good knowledge and respect for food safety/food hygiene before stepping into the kitchen for exercising their culinary talent. Food hygiene in the kitchen includes things such as proper storage of food before use, washing one’s hands before handling food; maintaining a clean environment when preparing food and making sure that all serving dishes are clean and free of contaminants. Chefs should keep in mind that


stringent standards of food hygiene/ food safety are extremely important for preventing illnesses not only for the guests at the restaurant, but also for the workers and management engaged in the given restaurant business. Eventually, laxity in food safety norms has every chance of affecting the bottom lines of the restaurant business. There are exhaustive routines that should be adhered to for avoiding health hazards in the food business.

Hygiene in Preparation Food hygiene also constitutes keeping preparation areas clean with minimum possible presence of germs. Mixing bowls, spoons, paring knives & other tools used in the kitchen should be washed thoroughly

before they are used as well as after. Not only utensils, knives and spoons should be washed thoroughly, before and after their use, but even cutting boards also should be cleaned and sterilised from time to time. S u c c i n c t l y, c l e a n i n g a n d disinfection of food preparation areas and equipments used for making and working on food is of prime importance in commercial eating out establishments. Cleaning may involve use of bleach, ethanol, etc. for disinfection. Washing of hands thoroughly before touching any food should be a practice among kitchen staff working in restaurants. Finger foods are all rage at parties, but dirty hands facilitate the spreading of bacteria. Therefore Chef and other kitchen

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staff should make it a point to wash up thoroughly with soap and water before and after handling any food. There are many safety procedures to follow when preparing food in restaurants. One of the most important is to melt frozen foods properly. Chefs can cook food from its frozen state or by refrigerating it under 38 degrees F. A microwave is another acceptable way to melt foods, but only if the duration of the entire cooking is done in microwave. Moreover, food items such as meats, poultry and seafood must be cooked in a manner so that they reach their safe minimum internal temperatures. Make sure the meats and poultry are cooked all the way through with the help of a food thermometer. Steaks should be cooked to 145 degrees F, ground beef

should be cooked to 160 degrees F, and all poultry should be cooked to 165 degrees F.

Preventing Crosscontamination Preventing cross-contamination is an important aspect of food

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hygiene as it plays a big role in food poisoning. Cross-contamination can occur when harmful germs transmit to food item/s from other food item/ s, surfaces, hands or equipments. The Chefs and other kitchen staff should collectively ensure that raw meat, poultry, raw fish and unwashed raw vegetables do not come in close contact with other foods. Moreover, they should not use a chopping board, knife or any other equipment which has been earlier used for working on raw meat, poultry or unwashed raw vegetables for preparing ready-to-eat food, without the thorough washing and disinfection of the given chopping board, knife or other utensil. Besides it is important to clean kitchen worktop and utensils with hot water and detergent to prevent crosscontamination. In fact, it is safe to clean and sanitise any utensil and equipment used to prepare food between its various uses and be particularly vigilant when handling a potentially harmful food such as raw poultry, meat and fish. This can prevent cross-contamination.

Storage Does Matter Besides taking essential steps in the preparation and handling of food, adequate importance must also be placed on proper storage of food in kitchens. Storing food correctly can not only help maintain its quality but also facilitate its safety. Proper storage of food also

prevents food wastage and hence the presence of rotten food in kitchens, and therefore plays a direct role in hygiene of kitchens. To facilitate proper storage of food in restaurant kitchens keep all food items wrapped and clean. Each food item in your walk-in refrigerator, freezer and your dry storage should be in a sealed labelled container or be packaged with the contents and date received. Do not take a chance on food items of questionable quality. ‘When in doubt, throw it out’ is a great rule to live by when it comes to food safety. Go through the refrigerator unit regularly and get rid of spoiled foods. Use the fresh products whenever possible. Moreover, to strengthen the process of impeccable standard of food safety in restaurants each food item served in restaurants will need its own flow chart, which looks at every step of the food’s journey from being received into the restaurant to being served to the guests. The steps in between inc lude stor age, prepar ation, holding or display, service, cooling, etc. The Chef/Executive Chef should be responsible for ensuring that these flow char ts are in order. Not only aspiring Chefs, but all students venturing into the food service business must keep in mind these above-mentioned guidelines to have a fruitful and hygienic career ahead. It must be remembered that without food safety, great quality of food involving culinary creativity, can be meaningless. For if a person falls ill after having your food, because of non adherence to some essential hygienic considerations, she/he would not likely to visit your restaurant again even if you offer a plethora of exotic delights. And you may face a lawsuit too… The Author is the Director of Madhuban Academy of Hospitality A d m i n i s t ra t i o n a n d R e s e a r c h (MAHAR), one of the premier institutes in the country. He can be reached at



Meeting Hygiene at Hospitals By Angshupriya Danda


t goes without saying that hygiene construes an important part of well-being and health. And in hospitals and other healthcare facilities, ensuring immaculate hygiene considerations or a germ-free environment is not merely crucial; it can make a difference between life and death. Therefore hospitals which don’t adhere to stringent norms of disposal of bio-medical waste or don’t ensure thorough pest management and laundry facilities are likely to make their patients more ill, instead of curing them. A large number of hospitals and clinics are burgeoning day by day in the metros and other cities of our country. But how many of them adhere to stringent norms of hygiene is a question that doesn’t yield an easy answer.

Stringent Set of Standards However, maintaining high quality hygiene in hospitals and other healthcare facilities, where emergence of myriad germs in the environment cannot be ruled out, is not without its share of challenges. Especially, with the increase in the number of infections and the advent of multi-drug resistant organisms in the recent years, it has become a major concern in the healthcare industry. At hospitals and other healthcare facilities, comprehensive set of


practices and procedures should be implemented in order to maintain hygiene and thereby facilitate patients’ well-being. These should of course include infection control practices like standard precautions applicable to all patients, adequate hand hygiene facilities and supplies, adequate self protecting devices, appropriate waste segregation measures, appropriate food handling measures, proper linen handling processes, sterilisation and disinfection policies, etc. The housekeeping department of the hospitals and other healthcare facilities should ensure that everyone, that is from patients to visitors and from doctors to nurses to paramedics to support staff, adhere to the hygienic norms in the concerned facilities. Besides, it is prudent to have a monthly tracking and monitoring of all the hospital acquired infections(if any), needle stick injury(if any), hygiene compliances, bed sores, thrombophlebitis, occupational exposure to blood and body fluid and vaccination status of the staff, etc. “We have a protocol to clean the patient’s room with bacillocid solution, which is an anti-bacterial solution. Further, we also use sodium hypochlorite to disinfect the items contaminated with body fluids. For other cleaning purposes, for example for cleaning of floors, wash rooms, equipment cleaning, etc. we use Johnson Diversify Taski chemicals like R1, R2, R5, R6, D7, R7, etc. We also train the housekeeping staff regularly regarding the usage of disinfectants. We are maintaining daily, weekly & monthly cleaning check list which is being adhered to very strictly and is cross-checked by the seniors,” averred Dr. Rajeev Boudhankar, V ice-President, Kohinoor Hospital, Mumbai.

Crucial Role of Housekeeping Housekeeping plays a vital role in not only maintaining hygiene in the hospitals, but also in facilitating

to give the property an aesthetic appeal. Both the factors together contribute towards the cure of the patient. Surveillance activities pertaining to housekeeping as well as other measures of hygiene should be appropriately directed towards the identified high risk areas in hospitals and other healthcare facilities. Verification of data should be conducted on regular basis by an infection control team to ensure that there are no lapses in maintaining sanitation. In case of any contagious disease, information (in the relevant format) should be sent to appropriate authorities by the housekeeping or hospital staff for immediate quarantine of the patient, so that the risk of Hospital Associated Infections (HAI) among other patients and employees is prevented or eliminated. “At Kohinoor, appropriate actions are being taken to control outbreaks of infections. We have stringent procedure of disposal of bio-medical waste. We organise infection prevention and control week once in a year, which includes training of staff and monitoring of employees’ health. We have a dedicated CSSD unit for proper documented procedures for sterilisation activities,” elaborated Dr. Boudhankar. “ The initiatives undertaken to ensure hygiene are very much relevant to the entire network under LV Prasad Eye Institute (LVPEI). We ensure this through periodic training of our staff members, and carrying out of regular internal audits and reports on the same. At LVPEI, we have evolved procedures wherein a hospital infection committee meets every month to review all hygiene related issues along with others on the agenda,” noted Dr. Usha Gopinathan, Executive Director, L V Prasad Eye Institute.

Ensuring Food Safety Food safety is an integral part of hospital hygiene. Food served at the

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Under the Scanner


ecently an assessment report submitted by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) for five hospitals in Delhi revealed negligence by hospital authorities at ensuring proper collection and disposal of bio-medical wastes generated. These five hospitals were seen not stringently adhering to the requisite laid down standards of collection and disposal of biomedical waste. The report submitted by CPCB at the National Green Tribunal put two private hospitals under the scanner i.e. Max Super Speciality Hospital, Indraprastha Extension, and Fortis Escorts Heart Institute and Research Centre Ltd., Okhla. The report also named three government hospitals — Dr. Baba Saheb Ambedkar Hospital, Rohini, Dr. Hedgewar Arogya Sansthan, and Lok Nayak Hospital under serious default to carry out strict standards pertaining to biomedical waste collection and disposal. Furthermore, the CPCB report for Lok Nayak Hospital observed that the sewage treatment plant at the hospital to be non-functional for three months. hospitals should be devoid of any impurities. The materials should be purchased from safe sources and should be far from their expiration date. The canteen staff should be instructed to follow guidelines like washing of hands before starting the shift, after using toilet or after touching nose or mouth. Wearing of a hairnet at all times while handling food items should be made mandatory for staff operating in hospital canteens. Even the outsider who enters the hospital canteen’s kitchen should also wear a hairnet and wash hands with sterilium. Washing of raw vegetables with diluted chlorine-based vegetable washing sanitiser should be done to prevent germs from entering the cooked food.


Moreover, the food should be cooked at the correct temperature and should never be under-cooked. Controlling time and temperature of the cooked food is also important. The canteen staff should maintain personal hygiene like keeping fingernails trimmed. The uniforms worn by them should also be neat and clean.

Tackling Biomedical Waste In the backdrop of mounting apprehension of the enormous biomedical waste produced at hospitals, the differentiator in this segment for the hospitals should be an effective implementation of waste management. According to recent studies, almost 904 tonnes of healthcare waste is produced at hospitals in India everyday. About 15 percent of this healthcare waste is potentially communicable and there is rampant lack of isolation of the biomedical wastes due to their improper disposal. Lack of proper disposal of biomedical waste in hospitals can result in a hazardous situation. Apart from the possible infection related r amific ations, r az orsharp substances in this type of waste can also cause wound to unsuspecting people. W hat is more dangerous is that improperly disposed drugs from the hospitals and used syringes can be repacked by unprincipled operators, for the market. The biomedical waste should be segregated at source and the housekeeping staff should be trained to identify and be able to segregate it accordingly. “We make use of colour coded bags for disposal of biomedical waste, as per the standard protocol. Our housekeeping staff collects these bags and store them at a centralised location, marked appropriately. During this process, heavy duty gloves are being used. From the centralised source, the multiclave agency, which is outsourced, clears these wastes once a day to locations allocated for waste incineration, in accordance with the government plan,” informed Dr. Usha. “The wastes of various departments from our hospital are

stored in DU (Dirty Utility) room of the respective departments. We have installed a porta cabin outside the hospital where all the biomedical waste from different DUs are brought by the housekeeping staff in every shift. The biomedical waste is collected by the local (authorised) waste collection agency on a daily basis. We ensure that no biomedical waste remains in our hospital for more than 24 hours,” asserted Dr. Boudhankar. In fact, proper tackling of biomedical waste should get the top priority in hospitals and other healthcare units, but sadly, despite a legislation and a subsequent revised legislation to this effect, there isn’t much sincere initiative by the medical fraternity of India and/or the housekeeping industry of India at large, in this regard. It should be remembered that casually dumped and untreated biomedical waste doesn’t only have a significant potential to jeopardise the health and well-being of the patients, staff and visitors at hospitals and other healthcare units, but can also harm the environment at large too, in a significant way. With a huge number of hospitals and healthcare units mushrooming throughout the urban landscape, an urgent need of the hour is more numbers of biomedical waste management systems. Comprehensive biomedical waste management systems installed by the government with corporate support would help secure the environment in a better manner and would also prevent the threat of hazardous diseases from the carelessly disposed off biomedical wastes. Besides that, authorities handing out operating licenses to the healthcare facilities should ensure that proper and regular checks are happening at these units and the hospitals and other healthcare units are strictly adhering to the set standards approved by the CPCB in matters of collecting and disposing of the biomedical wastes. It is extremely crucial for ensuring a clean, healthy and pollution free environment for our future. ■

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Mar-Apr ’13



To save the people from the menace of birds Indolite Devices has come up with an effective device called BirdScare®, which is designed to keep the birds from perching on the ledges or edges of building structures. Besides being effective, this device scares away the birds without harming them. Made of the material which is used for making bullet proof screens/ sports car, etc., BirdScare® is U.V. protected, and it can tolerate both sunny and rainy weather. In fact BirdScare® can withstand extreme temperature variations, +200o C to -200o C. The product is also safe as it is non-conductive and it does not interfere with electrical or communication transmission. It is also very easy to install the device and no special training is required. Being translucent, the product does not affect the looks of your property, and virtually no maintenance cost is required for BirdScare®. It also helps us in keeping health and hygiene as BirdScare® prevents the pigeons and birds from transmitting diseases such as salmonellosis, tuberculosis, and ornithosis. The investment on BirdScare® breaks even in a very short span as it eliminates the cost of manual cleaning of bird spitting. With the installation of BirdScare®, one can also expect to get sound sleep as the birds will not be there to flutter on your air-conditioner or cooler and wake you up in between. Indolite also has a unique monkey deterrent device called ApeScare®. Installation of this device on the ledges, boundary walls or entry points can minimize the monkey terror. Indolite Devices Pvt. Ltd.


Miraclean Tools Pvt. Ltd, has come up with its first Scrub-O-Mop. It can scrub, or serve the purpose of a dry dust mop. Just stick the scrubber pad on a PP frame and you can use it as a scrubber. It can also be utlised for scrubbing the floor with water and floor cleaners. The equipment can be fixed with a dry dust mop control and it will be ready to wipe the floors clean. It can also be fixed with the scrub-o-mop refill to serve the dual purpose of scrubbing and mopping together. While the Nylon Alox scrubber slab in the middle of the dry mop scrubs the floor and removes the stick hard material (dirt, gum, etc.), the four side cover microfiber filaments collect the mobile dirt. During mopping, the special filament, according to the company spokesperson, produces static energy and attracts minor dust particles. Miraclean Tools Pvt. Ltd.

COSMIC HEALERS PRESENTS BATH & WASHROOM CLEANER FROM CLEENOL Cosmic Healers Pvt. Ltd., one of the corporate divisions of Global Excellence Group, presents Bath & Washroom Cleaner from the house of Cleenol, an UK-based group manufacturing quality cleaning and hygiene products. Formulated for the frequent cleaning of bath and washrooms, the solution is an effective cleaner and descaler for both light to medium soiling. The cleaner is ideal for cleaning and descaling taps, baths, showers, ceramics, plastics and porcelain surfaces. After cleaning, a fresh citrus fragrance leaves the room deodorised. The product is bio-degradable, contains no phosphate, and has minimal impact on the environment. The Bath & Washroom Cleaner, imported and presented in India by Cosmic Healers Pvt. Ltd., is based on citric acid, which is derived from renewable resource plants, and the product has proven to be effective against MRSA. Cosmic Healers (P) Ltd.


Quartz Home Care’s (QHC) Wizard Floor Cleaner is a product which is being used by most of the leading institutions for day-to -day cleaning and disinfection. The product has lime fresh fragrance and is capable of destroying germs and bacteria at the source. Wizard has been upgraded with innovative rawmaterials which are sourced from various countries across the globle. Being multipurpose and very safe, non-acidic and non-toxic, this product can be used for cleaning of any type of floors, laminated surfaces, plastics, etc. without defacing or destroying the originality of surfaces. Available in user-friendly packings, Wizard has two variants; low-foam for machine use and regular for manual use. The product is also reasonably priced. Quartz Home Care


he information published in this section is as per the details furnished by the r e s p e c t i v e m a n u f a c t u r e r / d i s t r i b u t o r. I n a n y c a s e , i t d o e s n o t r e p r e s e n t t h e v i e w s o f Hammer Publishers Pvt. Ltd.


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Leading a Culture of Cleanliness B

haskar Suri plays a very significant role as the head of housekeeping department at Jaipur Marriott Hotel. His core responsibilities in this position include maintaining the highest possible levels of quality of cleanliness, guest service, horticulture, and coordination and control of the housekeeping operations and the housekeeping team at the hotel. With a degree in hotel management and with over eight years experience, Suri knows how to steer through the overall housekeeping operations of the hotel. Prior to his present assignment, he served as the Assistant Laundry Manager at Park Hyatt Goa Resort and Spa and was also associated with Courtyard by Marriott Chennai & the The Oberoi Grand, Kolkata. Under his leadership, Jaipur Marriott has received many awards and accolades in terms of service excellence and product maintenance. Suri has been a true team player and has successfully motivated his team to work to its full potential so as to ensure that each guest goes back from the hotel with a happy memory. The excerpts of the interview follow: By Sharmila Chand

How important in your opinion is housekeeping to hospitality?

Housekeeping of a facility primarily involves maintaining cleanliness of the facility and all other associated services attached to that. Cleanliness is important not only for health but also for the overall well-being. The standard of housekeeping has a crucial role in the hotels’ reputation. Housekeeping determines to a large extent whether guests are happy during their stay, and whether they would consider repeat stays at the hotel. The guest’s satisfaction is the primary objective of housekeeping in the hospitality industry. Succinctly, housekeeping is the backbone that keeps the property smoothly functioning, clean and efficient.

Over the years, how much housekeeping in hotels has changed in India, and in which areas it has remained the same?

Technology and modernisation has brought about significant changes in housekeeping, in Indian hotels, which has been reflected in the increase in efficiency and improved equipments. During the recent years, the expectations on the role from housekeeping have increased. Now a great deal of importance is given on environmental issues. But still housekeeping in hotels often involves repetitive and physically demanding jobs along with the pressure to have spic and span rooms with less time and by incurring the lowest possible cost.


Please name any one tool which has made the housekeeping operations much easier?

In my opinion it is the Opera Software.

Kindly give your views on the role of training in housekeeping in hotels

Staff training is a very essential part of the hotel industry, which includes training of its housekeeping staff too. Through training the management can get to know about their employees in a better way. Training can also help employees to make the best use of their own abilities, and thereby can facilitate employees to become more professional at what they do. Thus industry training could improve the quality of the housekeeping employees and, in turn, professionalise the Indian hospitality industry.

What are the challenges of recruiting the right staff in the housekeeping department of the hotel, and in retaining them?

Sourcing the right personnel for housekeeping in the hotels can often be a daunting task. Though housekeeping is vital to the hotel business, many bright hotel management graduates do not always prefer to work in the housekeeping department. They prefer roles where they have direct interaction with the guests and not in department which work in background. The housekeeping personnel should not only have the right efficiency, but also the right motivation. Moreover, it is not an easy task for any hotel to constantly motivate this vast section

of its workforce in housekeeping who mostly works in the background. Retention of staff in housekeeping cannot be successful without motivated employees. I would say that judicious selection and right and regular training of human resource are the keys towards maintaining good housekeeping departments within the hotel industry. What is the role of the housekeeping staff in the context of security?

It is extremely important for the housekeeping staff to be observant and vigilant and promptly report of any untoward activity or guest/s on guest floors. At the Marriott, we have a surveillance detection programme called ‘See something, Say something.’ It is mandatory for housekeeping personnel working with us to undergo this programme.

How do you evaluate the future of housekeeping in India?

The future of housekeeping in the country will rest on innovation and evolution of new trends in understanding and catering to guests’ expectations.

What are the major challenges you have to face in your job responsibilities?

Inefficient distribution of linen and supplies from traditional housekeeping carts is a major impediment towards completing daily room assignments within stipulated time and maintaining the requisite room quality standards. Moreover, overloaded housekeeping carts and piles of soiled linen lead to unattractive guest hallways.

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Regd. No. R.N. DELENG/2001/7213

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Clean & Hygiene Review (Mar-April 2013)  
Clean & Hygiene Review (Mar-April 2013)  

In this issue of Clean & Hygiene Review, we have focused on the depressing state of sanitation and hygiene that is frequently experienced in...