President Patil to felicitate Nirmal Gram Puraskar awardees

March 22nd, 2011 - 4:46 pm ICT by ANI  

New Delhi, Mar 22 (ANI): President Pratibha Devisingh Patil will felicitate over 2808 Nirmal Gram Puraskar awardees from 21 states at a function in Vigyan Bhawan here on Wednesday.

Union Minister of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Vilasrao Deshmukh would release a booklet on water security on the occasion, which would also be attended by Minister of State for Rural Development Agatha Sangma.

About 500 Panchayati Raj Representatives from 21 states across the country have been invited to attend the function.

Nirmal Gram Puraskar has been one of the pioneering initiatives of the department of drinking water supply and sanitation under the Ministry Of Rural Development to encourage the Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs) to achieve full sanitation coverage.

Introduced in 2004 by the Government Of India, the scheme provides for cash rewards to gram panchayats and block panchayats, zilla panchayats and Institutions that achieve hundred percent sanitation, which means they are hundred percent open defecation free (ODF) and have tackled issues of liquid and solid waste management.

For the year 2010-11, over 2808 gram panchayats from 21 States have been selected for the Nirmal Gram Puraskar along with one block panchayat from Tamil Nadu.

During the financial year 2010-11, cash award worth Rs. 44.5 crores has been released for the award winning 2808 Gram Panchayats. The amount of cash prize ranges from Rs. 50,000 to Rs. five lakhs, based on the population of the gram panchayat.

Rural Sanitation Coverage has grown up at the rate of about 7-8 percent per annum since the launch of Nirmal Gram Purskar in 2004, as compared to three percent in the period 2001-2004.

Ever since its launch, the Nirmal Gram Purskar has been very successful in putting up the agenda of rural sanitation in forefront and played the role of a catalyst in motivating the Panchayati Raj Institutions to take up the initiative in a big way. (ANI)

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