BERHAMPUR: IN order to provide safe drinking water in rural areas, the Rural Water Supply and Sanitation department spends crores of rupees. But several villages in Ganjam district are deprived of water supply. The glaring example is Raibandh panchayat in Soroda block. The panchayat has nine villages and work on water supply project at a cost of `20 lakh began in 2012. A bore well was sunk and a pump house was constructed on the banks of Padma river near Arakhadiha village. An overhead tank was also constructed, but at a distance of 5 km from the pump house at Raibandh village.
Even several stands posts came up in all the nine villages, but so far there has been no water supply. The locals alleged that due to use of sub-standard materials, including pipelines, cracks appear each time the pump house releases water. Contacted, RWSS engineer T Prasad Patra assured that water will be supplied within a week. He said the contractor has been replaced and the damaged pipelines are being replaced on war footing.
Land for slum-dwellers
The municipal officials should regularly visit the wards in their respective areas for the benefit of residents in Ganjam district. This was stated by district Collector Prem Chandra Choudhary. Presiding over a meeting on urban area development held at Chatrapur on Thursday, Choudhary directed the members of all the 19 urban bodies to take steps to provide houses to the slum-dwellers in their areas.
The Collector also asked the members to identify the landless families in slum areas. He said a survey is being conducted in the urban areas and places, where 20 families reside, would be treated as slum areas.
A committee would be formed for each slum area and lands would be identified to rehabilitate the families. Under the scheme, families residing in huts on government land and embankments of water bodies of Revenue department would be entitled for house. Each slum family would be given a minimum of 30 sq metre and maximum of 60 sq metre land.