Odisha: More than 98 per cent rural households do not have access to safe drinking water

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BHUBANESWAR: Even though the State Government has fixed a target to provide safe drinking water to all by 2020, more than 98 percent of rural households in Odisha do not have access to pipe water supply.

Out of the 90,20,100 rural households in the state, only 1,06,787 households have access to pipe water connection. Out of the 47,149 villages in the State only 17,210 have piped water connection.

Chief minister Naveen Patnaik today reviewed the activities of the rural development department at the secretariat here. However, transfer of responsbility of maintenance and running of rural drinking water projects have created confusion among grassroots level functioning holding up the implementation of the projects at many places.

Not a single rural household in Puri, Kandhamal and Subarnapur districts has pipe water connection. Similarly, less than 100 households in rural areas of Balangir, Malkangiri, Nayagarh and Koraput have been provided connection.

Less than 1000 rural households in Boudh, Gajapati, Jagatsinghpur, Jajpur, Jharsuguda, Keonjhar, Nuapada and Sambalpur districts have pipe water connection. As many as 445 out of 6,234 gram panchayat (GP) headquarters are still not covered under the pipe water scheme.

Sources said 68 GP headquarters of Kalahandi district, 26 GPs in Kendrapara, 25 in Angul, 19 in Nuapada, 17 each in Jajpur and Keonjhar and 15 GPs in Sundargarh district are still not covered under the pipe water supply scheme.

The State Government has made a budgetary allocation of `988.2 crore in 2016-17 for implementation of 600 rural water supply schemes, augmentation of 500 pipe water supply projects, construction of 300 overhead tanks and 500 iron removal units.

According to official sources, 401 bridges under the Biju Setu Yojana (BSY) have been completed. Besides, 136 kilometers rural roads have been constructed under Mukyamantri Sadak Yojana.

The chief minister directed that there should be third party assessment of all projects to improve quality.

Source: The New Indian Express

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