GUWAHATI, Feb 12 � Swachh Bharat Abhiyan could be the buzzword in India, but in Assam, the very foundation of the welfare project is being questioned.
Although crores of rupees have been released in the name of implementation of sanitation programme in Assam, none of the districts of Assam has reportedly formed the Anchalik Panchayat (Block) Water and Sanitation Committee which should be ideally entrusted with the responsibility to look after the work and progress of sanitation at the block level.
This, according to many, has seriously hit the level of implementation of sanitation schemes in Assam, especially in the rural areas.
As per the Government rules, besides the apex state level body, a district-level and a gram panchayat level committee must be constituted in all the districts.
According to a report card status of Swach Bharat Mission (As on January 7, 2015), Government of India had approved funds amounting to Rs 92814.80 lakh, of which Rs 74133.33 lakh were received. An amount of Rs 65482.47 lakh has been shown as the fund utilised.
Although the fact-sheet reflects 88.33 per cent of utilisation against the amount released, serious apprehensions have been cast on the ground-level implementation.
As per the laid down rules, the president of the Anchalik Panchayat of the Block concerned is to be the chairperson of the Anchalik Panchayat (Block) Water and Sanitation Committee, while the block development officer is the co-chairperson of the committee.
Six other members constitute the sanitation committee of the block concerned, the rules say.
CCUBEZ NGO, which is preparing a report on �access to safe drinking water and proper sanitation�, told The Assam Tribune that large-scale corruption at different levels has resulted in gross human rights violation with lakhs of people still being deprived of safe water and proper sanitation.
The NGO has already moved the anti-corruption and vigilance wing in this regard.