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Rs 1474-cr WB water supply project in State

By R Dutta Choudhury

GUWAHATI, June 12 � Assam is one of the four States of the country where tapped water supply schemes could cover less than 10 per cent of the population, and considering the problem, the World Bank is supporting a mega water supply and sanitation project in the State, which would cover seven districts.

World Bank sources revealed that a water supply and sanitation project was launched in Jharkhand last week, while the project in Assam was launched yesterday and similar projects would be launched in the States of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh soon.

The total outlay for the Rural Water Supply and Sanitation project for low income group people will be Rs 1,474 crore and the World Bank is supporting the project with International Development Association credit of Rs 737 crore. The remaining fund would be given by the Central and State governments. The credit for the State government would be provided for a period of 25 years with a grace period of 5 years.

Sources said that the project would cover 5,041 habitations under 179 gaon panchayats in the districts of Kamrup, Hailakandi, Jorhat, Sonitpur, Sivasagar, Bongaigaon and Morigaon and it is expected that 13 lakh people would be covered under the project. The project is expected to be completed in 6 years.

Sources revealed that the project would link the panchayats with the other levels of the administration and strengthen the capacity of the rural local bodies. In addition to water supply, another component of the project would be solid and liquid waste management in the villages covered and to create health and hygiene awareness among the people of the rural areas.

Sources said that there would be seven large multi-village schemes and in the first phase to be completed by 2017, three such schemes are expected to be completed.

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