Gujarat seeks hike in centre’s share in rural water supply

August 27th, 2010 - 12:34 am ICT by IANS  

Gandhinagar, Aug 26 (IANS) Gujarat’s Panchayat and Rural Development Minister Narottambhai Patel Thursday called for raising the central government’s share in the Rural Water Supply and Sanitation scheme.
Inaugurating the western regional consultative workshop of experts from six states here to prepare the Strategic Plan for the Five Year Plan, Patel praised the central scheme but termed the allocations “inadequate”.

The minister also called for including villagers living above the poverty line under the scheme, saying providing potable water at the villagers’ doorstep regularly and in adequate quantity was necessary for other rural poor too.

Patel described the Narmada Project and the Water Users’ Association in Gujarat as some of the unique steps undertaken by the state government in solving the state’s acute water shortage, through optimum utilisation of surface water instead of overdrawing underground water.

Having implemented yet another unique ‘Nirmal Gram’ project in all the villages of the state, he said, ‘Swarnim Gram’ is the next project to raise the state’s Human Development Index.

Gujarat’s Minister of State for Water Supply Parbat Patel and Chief Secretary A.K. Joti, among others, listed details of various projects undertaken by the state government in the field of water resources management.

In his remarks, central Drinking Water and Sanitation Secretary Arun Kumar Mishra explained the significance of the strategic plan. The workshop was attended by experts from Maharashtra, Goa, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, besides Gujarat.

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