This paper reports the coverage, compliance and other operational issues of mass drug administration (MDA) of diethylcarbamazine and albendazole under a programme to eliminate lymphatic filariasis (LF) in Orissa state of India. Both quantitative and qualitative methods were used to collect data from 90 villages and nine urban areas of four districts of Orissa, India. In Orissa, 67% of people older than 2 years had received the drugs during MDA and 42% had consumed them. About 25% of people had not taken the tablets although they received them. Urban areas recorded lower rates than rural areas. The paper discusses some policy/health system-, community- and drug-related issues that influenced coverage and compliance of MDA. It is essential to improve compliance in future rounds of MDA to achieve targets of control and eventual elimination of LF in a reasonable time frame.