April 23, 2014
1000 days at a glance: Drinking water for all
Drinking water has been a priority of the West Bengal Government after coming to power. The Government developed a Vision 2020 document for projects regarding the supply of drinking water in rural areas on a short term and long term basis, of approximately Rs 1295 crore and Rs 21,125 crore, respectively.
Rs 5640 crore has been sanctioned for 383 rural pipelined water supply projects as part of this `vision`. As a result, 1.1 crore villagers, specially those from the drought-prone areas of Bankura and Purulia, and from the brackish-water and arsenic-prone areas of North and South 24 Parganas, will be benefited.
Number of people benefited due to the projects undertaken: During the regime of the new government, 416 rural pipelined water supply projects and 54,935 tube wells at an expense of Rs 1777 crore, have been made operational. As a result, 37.07 lakh people have been benefited.
Arsenic-free drinking water: 130.58 villagers (till 31.12.2013), which is almost 78.40% of the total population in arsenic-prone areas in different blocks, are being supplied arsenic-free water through different methods. In terms of the present master plan, this implies 96% implementation.
Fluoride-free drinking water: Proper measures are being taken to supply fluoride-free drinking water to 43 fluoride-prone blocks in the districts of m, Bankura, South Dinajpur, North Dinajpur, Purulia, Malda and South 24 Parganas at a cost of approximately Rs 1580 crore.
Utilisation of solar energy in water projects: This is the first time in West Bengal when the utilisation of solar energy in water supply projects has been implemented.
704 water supply projects depending on solar energy in the drought-prone Bankura, West Midnapore and Purulia districts have been sanctioned at a cost of Rs 51.67 crore. A total of three pilot projects, in three districts, have been implemented.
Projects in the Jangalmahal region: Fifty pipelined water supply projects at a cost of about Rs 141.70 crore have been sanctioned for the benefit of 3.77 lakh people (on the basis of Census 2011) in the Jangalmahal region. Forty-seven projects have already been implemented.
Water supply to New Town in Kolkata and adjacent municipal and rural areas: Building of reservoirs and supply infrastructure for supplying 100 million gallons per day (MGD) of pure water to New Town, Naba Diganto, Bidhannagar and South Dum Dum Municipalities, and to Haroa, Rajarhat and Bhangar and adjacent areas, at a cost of about Rs 348.37 crore have been sanctioned at the initiative of the departments of Public Health Engineering and Urban Development.
Habra-Gaighata arsenic-free water project: A surface water-project named `Habra-Gaighata` has been undertaken at a cost of about Rs 578.94 crore for the extensive arsenic-prone areas of North 24 Parganas district. As a result, 18.04 lakh people will be benefited.
Bankura district water project (first phase): River and surface water-based pipelined water supply project at a cost of about Rs 1011.12 crore for Bankura district (first phase) through Backward Region Grant Fund (BRGF) is going on. As a result, 30.15 lakh people will be benefited. The work is almost 50% completed.
Purulia district water project (with the financial assistance of Japan): A drinking water supply project across nine blocks in Purulia district at a cost of Rs 1173.10 crore with the financial assistance of JICA (Japan) has been undertaken. As a result, 29.10 lakh people will be benefited.
`Kulpi and adjacent area` mega water project: A mega surface water-based pipelined water supply project named `Kulpi and adjacent area` project at a cost of Rs 1332.41 crore in the brackish-water areas of South 24 Parganas, has been undertaken. 32.89 lakh people of nine blocks would be benefited from this project.
Automatic drinking water pouch machine to combat drought and flood: Fourteen mobile water purification units, including automatic drinking water pouch machines, have been made operational for the sake of distressed people during floods and droughts all across the state.
`Prandhara` – bottled pure drinking water: Eight drinking water bottling plants have been set up in various parts of the state. The bottled water, under the brand name of Prandhara, is being supplied to people in a unique manner.
Training given by the department of Public Health Engineering: More than 10,000 newly elected panchayat members, health workers, anganwadi workers and other related people across eight districts have been trained.