HYDERABAD: The Centre has accused the Telangana government of ‘misleading’ people over the state receiving a national award for Mission Bhagiratha. The Central government’s Department of Water Resources has said the claims by the state government on the issue were not only misleading, but “were not based on facts.”
In a statement released through the Press Information Bureau on Saturday, the department said: “It may also be noted although the state has reported 100% of tap water connection, it has not got it certified through gram panchayats as required under National Jal Jeevan Mission (NJJM).”
It said the award for Telangana was for a single parameter –supplying water regularly to rural households —and not for the entire scheme. The award, to be given to Telangana on October 2 in Delhi, was based on what the department called a ‘functionality assessment’ that looked at various parameters too.
It said 12,570 households in 409 villages were sampled as part of the assessment and it was found that 8 per cent of the sampled households, around 1,005, were getting less than 55 litres per capita per day (LPCD) of drinking water. Similarly, out of total sampled households, five per cent or 628 households were found to be receiving water with quality that was not up to the National Jal Jeevan Mission norms.
It may be recalled that following the announcement of the award, state ministers Errabelli Dayakar Rao who heads the panchayat raj portfolio, and T. Harish Rao, who heads the finance and health portfolios, told reporters on Thursday that the award for Mission Bhagiratha announced by NJJM was a recognition of one among the state’s efforts to provide permanent solutions to problems faced by people.
They had also said that the award should be an eyeopener for Union ministers who come to Telangana and criticise the state government even as the Centre keeps conferring awards on the state for its programmes. They said that Mission Bhagiratha was selected for ‘exemplary’ performance for regularity of water supply.
The Centre, on Saturday, however, said that other claims made by the state included that the “centre through National Jal Jeevan Mission reviewed Mission Bhagiratha scheme, and that each household was getting 100 LPCD quality drinking water under Mission Bhagiratha, that inspections were conducted in 320 randomly selected villages across Telangana, and that all villages were provided uninterrupted, daily quality drinking water through taps.”
It said no “assessment of Mission Bhagiratha scheme” was carried out in Telangana and all that was assessed as part of the ‘functionality assessment 2022’, was to look into the functionality of tap water connection against the NJJM norms of 55 litres per capita per day (LPCD) and quality as per BIS 10500 standards....