Odisha earmarks Rs.300 crore for drinking water infrastructure

Bhubaneswar, April 19 (IANS) Earmarking Rs.300 crore for developing infrastructure for supplying potable water in Odisha, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday directed officials to provide free drinking water to the urban poor.

The chief minister directed officials to make efforts to ensure water supply, both in rural and urban areas.

The decision to provide free drinking water to the poor in urban areas across the state was taken at a high-level meeting chaired by the chief minister here.

Special Relief Commissioner P.K. Mohapatra said about Rs.300 crore given by the 13th Finance Commission and previous commissions to all panchayats in the state will be spent for drinking water infrastructure development.

He said that in rural areas, all panchayats have been directed to spend 30 percent of the panchayat funds towards piped water supply.

“All panchayats have been issued directions to utilise 30 percent of their funds towards piped water supply. We are receiving complaints on a daily basis on our helpline. Accordingly, efforts are being taken for redressal,” he said.

On reports regarding the death of 53 people due to sun stroke, he said: “On inquiry, it was found that deaths in 15 of these cases occurred due to other reasons. The remaining cases are under inquiry.”

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