Chief Secretary BK Patnaik on Wednesday directed the district collectors to ensure that anganwadi centres (AWCs), schools and health centres are housed in safe buildings. The directive of the Chief Secretary came in the wake of the July 9 Ranpur tragedy in Nayagarh district in which seven schoolchildren died in a wall collapse.
The Chief Secretary reviewed the progress made in shifting anganwadi centres, primary schools and health centres running from unsafe buildings through a video conferencing with district collectors.
He asked the collectors to demolish all unused and unsafe building and take up repair works of all old buildings from different permissible funds. The district collectors were asked to ensure that the shifting work is completed in three days and report compliance to the Government.
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had asked the district collectors on July 10, a day after the school tragedy, to conduct a survey of schools, hospitals and anganwadi centres at the block-level and submit reports by July 25. The collectors were also asked to complete the survey by a special team in a week and take measures for repair of buildings or make alternative arrangements.
Besides, the Chief Minister had directed the Revenue Divisional Commissioners (RDCs) and collectors to make a scrutiny of the buildings every year before the monsoon on a priority basis.
Health and Family Welfare Secretary PK Mohapatra told the district collectors that instructions had been issued to hospitals and public health institutions not to keep patients in unsafe buildings.
Rural Development Secretary SN Tripathy said measures had been taken to ensure availability of safe drinking water within 250 metres of AWCs and schools. He further said each district had been allotted 100 more tube-wells for AWCs and schools. The tube-wells would be provided to schools under Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA).
Women and Child Development Secretary Arati Ahuja said instruction had been issued to district officers of the Department to put a sign board in front of each AWC so that people can locate it easily. In case of shifting, the new AWC building should be within the service area of the concerned centre.
The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of the Assembly recently rapped the State Government for the poor condition of the anganwadi centres despite huge flow of funds from the Centre and lack of information with the department concerned about the number of unsafe building.