Sunday 13 May 2012

Govt committed to provide safe drinking water to all Tribal habitations

Government today said, it is committed to providing greater coverage of Scheduled Tribe concentrated habitations with safe drinking water supply schemes. Under the National Rural Drinking Water Programme, NRDWP, 10% of the annual budget allocation is earmarked for expenditure on rural water supply schemes covering Scheduled Tribe concentrated habitations as 10% weightage is given to the rural SC/ST population in the State. Small habitations, including those in forest areas can be included in the habitation database and taken up for coverage by the states. The previous norm that only habitations with 100 persons or more be considered for coverage has been modified under NRDWP to ensure coverage of all habitations including those with less than 100 populations. Moreover, the previous norm of one handpump per 250 persons has been modified by giving flexibility to the states to fix their own population and distance norm for installing handpumps. As on 01.04.2012, out of 16,64,186 rural habitations in the country, 3,57,727 are Scheduled Tribe concentrated habitations. Of these, 2,53,497 habitations are fully covered with safe drinking water supply, 82,110 are partially covered, while 22,120 habitations have one or more drinking water sources with chemical contamination problems. The information was given by the Union Rural Development Minister Shri Jairam Ramesh in a written reply to a question in the Lok Sabha.

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