Sunday, May 4, 2014

‘STATE UTILISED MERE 39 PER CENT DRINKING WATER FUND POST-PHAILIN’Monday, 05 May 2014 | PNS | BALANGIR | in Bhubaneswar

‘STATE UTILISED MERE 39 PER CENT DRINKING WATER FUND POST-PHAILIN’
Monday, 05 May 2014 | PNS | BALANGIR | in Bhubaneswar
The State Government grumbled against meagre allocation of sum by the Centre for restoration works after the Phailin and subsequent floods in 2013. However, sources revealed it could spend a mere 39 per cent of the funds it received under natural calamity head of the National Rural Drinking Water Programme (NRDWP).
The NRDWP is a flagship programme of the Central Government for rural drinking water supply. The NRDWP earmarks five per cent of the total fund under ‘natural calamity’ head. As per NRDWP guideline, this fund is used to mitigate drinking water problems in the rural areas in the wake of natural calamities. The State Government’s Phailin memorandum submitted to the Central Government on October 21, 2013, mentioned that 3,040 pipe water supply systems and 162,170 tube wells had been damaged / submerged in the rural areas due to the cyclone and flood. Through the memorandum, the State Government had placed a demand of Rs 27.60 crore for ‘immediate repair’. The irony is that in the same paragraph of the memorandum, the State Government had again stated that only Rs 68 lakh was already available with it in the related scheme for the purpose.
Both the statistics about available fund cannot be true at the same time. One shows that the State Government had a lot of money under NRDWP’s ‘natural calamity’ head which it miserably failed to utilise.The other shows that the State had barely any money to restore damaged rural water supply provisions after the cyclone and flood, pointed out a release issued by Bimal Pandia of Regional Center for Development and Cooperation (RCDC).
In a review meeting held at New Delhi between the officials of the Central and State Governments on March 13 last, it was revealed that Odisha had Rs 384.68 crore under the ‘calamity’ head for financial year 2013-14. But till March 12 last, it had spent less than 39 per cent of the amount, according to the release.


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