Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation Current Affairs - 2019
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Ministry of Drinking Water & Sanitation has launched Swajal Scheme in 115 Aspirational districts of India to provide clean drinking water. It will involve outlay of Rs. 700 crores through flexi-funds under existing National Rural Drinking Water Programme (NRDWP) budget.
Swajal is community owned drinking water scheme or programme for sustained drinking water supply. Under it, 90% of project cost is taken care by the Government and remaining 10% is contributed by beneficiary community. The operations and management of the project is taken care by the local villagers. Under this scheme, government aims to provide villages with piped water supply powered by harnessing solar energy. Moreover, hundreds of rural technicians will be trained under this scheme for operation and maintenance of Swajal units.
The Union Government had selected 115 backward (aspirational) districts for rapid transformation by 2022 in line with Government’s vision to create ‘New India’. NITI Aayog had selected these districts on six socio-economic parameters, pertaining to health and nutrition, education, financial inclusion and skill development, agriculture and water resources and basic infrastructure. Under this initiative, Government focuses closely on improving people’s ability to participate fully in burgeoning economy
These 115 backward districts include 35 districts affected by Left Wing Extremists (LWE) violence, 55 districts just affected by LWE and another 15 including districts in Jammu and Kashmir and northeast affected by terrorism. Government has embarked upon major policy initiative for rapid transformation of these 115 districts that are lagging on specific development parameters. For this government will leverage Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs), aided by technology to bring radical transformation of these aspirational districts
The Union Ministry of Drinking Water & Sanitation has selected 10 more iconic sites under Phase III of Swachh Iconic Places (SIP) of Swachh Bharat Mission. The third phase of SIP was launched at Mana village which is situated close to Badrinath temple in Uttarakhand.
These 10 new sites under Phase III have joined 20 other iconic places selected under Phase I & II where special sanitation work is already underway. 10 new iconic sites are: Raghavendra Swamy Temple (Andhra Pradesh), Hazarduari Palace (West Bengal), Brahma Sarovar Temple (Haryana), Vidur Kuti (Uttar Pradesh), Mana village (Uttarakhand), Pangong Lake (J&K), Nagvasuki Temple (UP), Ima Keithal market (Manipur), Sabarimala Temple (Kerala) and Kanvashram (Uttarakhand).
Swachh Iconic Places (SIP)
SIP is an initiative of Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation under Swachh Bharat Mission and was launched in 2016. It was initiated as project to implement Prime Minister’s vision to take iconic places and their surroundings to higher standards of cleanliness (swachhata), so that all visitors benefit and also take away home message of cleanliness.
Implementation of SIP: It is collaborative project of Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation with three other central Ministries: Ministry of (M/o) Housing and Urban Affairs, M/o Culture, and M/o Tourism. It also involves local administrations in concerned states and public sector and private companies are also sponsoring partners.
Initiatives taken up under SIP: Improved sewage infrastructure, installation of Sewage Treatment Plant (STP), drainage facilities, improved sanitation facilities, water vending machines, solid and liquid waste management (SLWM) set-up, structure restoration, lighting arrangements, beautification of parks, roads maintenance, better transport facilities in approach and access areas besides at the main sites.
Phase I iconic places are: Ajmer Sharif Dargah, CST Mumbai, Kamakhya Temple, Golden Temple, Maikarnika Ghat, Meenakshi Temple, Shri Mata Vaishno Devi, Jagannath Temple, Taj Mahal and Tirupati Temple.
Phase II of Swachh Iconic Places: Gangotri, Yamunotri, Charminar, Mahakaleshwar Temple, Convent and Church of St. Francis of Assissi, Kalady, Gommateswara, BaidyanathDham, Gaya Tirth and Somnath temple.