Jajpur: Over 90 percent of the residents in Jajpur district are yet to get hygienic piped drinking water supply directly to their as eight sanctioned mega drinking water projects are yet to become operational, sources said.
Construction of the projects has been going on for the last five years and is yet to be completed. In the process, pipes laid in many places have developed cracks and water is seeping out of those instead of reaching the residents of the district. Residents claimed that this has happened due to an alleged unholy nexus between the authorities of Central Institute of Plastic Engineering and Technology (CIPET) and the agency supplying pipes.
The Centre-run CIPET is entrusted with task of verifying the quality of pipes before and after their purchase. The agency has its head office in Chennai. Locals alleged that companies from outside Odisha have been given the contract of supplying the pipes while local firms in Odisha have been neglected.
Recently, the CIPET officials approved 1,36,631 metres of pipe for use in the drinking water projects in Rasulpur and Danagadi blocks. However, immediately after laying the pipes, those developed cracks at various places, sources informed.
Reports said that 37,000 families out of 3,78,645 in 1,560 revenue villages have been connected with piped drinking water. It is just 10 percent of the population who are supposed to get piped water.
The Rural Water Supply and Sanitation (RWSS) department, however, claimed that 450 piped drinking water projects have been completed and residents are deriving benefits from it. The department added that work on some more projects is underway. However, the fact is that over Rs 1,000 crore has so far been spent on the projects, but they are still not fully operational.
As a result in many places, residents still have to depend on tube wells to meet their water requirements. However, many of the tube wells produce contaminated water with huge iron content. In many places, tube wells also do not function. The situation is more critical in industrial and mining areas of the district where the groundwater is high in iron content. As a result, people are getting afflicted with kidney diseases.
Drinking water supply to residents in Siha panchayat under Barchana block during morning is quite irregular. Residents have alleged that the pipelines have developed cracks at many places for which water overflows on the road. Residents Pramod Kumar Biswal, Pratap Kumar Sahu, Bira Charan Sahu, and Niranjan Sahu have lodged a complaint in this regard with the superintendent engineer of RWSS department. They have also alleged that the tanks have been constructed in a faulty manner. As a result, those cannot be filled up to the brim.
Similarly, another project at Sujanpur panchayat has been completed three years back but, it is not functional, sarpanch Bishnupriya Mahakur alleged. She said that she had lodged a complaint with the higher authorities but her pleas are yet to be addressed.
Efforts to contact RWSS superintendent engineer Susant Kumar Ghadei over phone ended in vain as he did not respond to calls.
post news network
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