BHUBANESWAR: In a bid to expand coverage of drinking water supply to urban poor, the State Government has decided to extend the domestic water connection scheme ‘Piyush’ to beneficiaries of Antyodaya, Annapurna and other social welfare programmes.
While Piyush scheme was limited to only BPL beneficiaries, a major chunk of urban poor in cities was deprived of safe drinking water at affordable cost. Besides, many urban households, who do not have ownership of the premises, are debarred from piped water connections.
The move, apart from increasing accessibility to drinking water to most households, would put an end to unauthorised connections, loss of revenue and adverse health impacts of the marginalised sections in cities, a senior official of Housing and Urban Development Department (HUDD) said.
Piyush aims at providing one tap in every household. Under this scheme, domestic water connection fee for BPL consumers is fixed at `500 (a non-refundable connection fee of `440 plus a refunded deposit of `60). The amount can be paid either one-time or in five interest-free EMIs.
The State Government has also planned to relax the formalities involved in availing water connection.
As per the new regulations which have already been implemented, an applicant who does not own the premises occupied by him/her can get water connection with an Indemnity Bond, insuring the Public Health Engineering Organisation (PHEO) against any damage to the piped connection.
The applicant, needs to submit identity proof which can be the voter ID, electricity bill, Aadhaar card, bank passbook, BPL card or holding tax receipt.
The relevant provisions in Orissa Water Works (Urban Local Bodies) Rules and amendments have already been modified to fit the new plans, sources said. All ULBs have been directed to implement the modified scheme with immediate effect.