Page 3Volume III, Issue 3
Clean Water for All—The StrategicPlan Framework
Water-borne infections hamper absorp-tion of food even when intake is suffi-cient. Clean drinking water is, therefore,vital to reduce the incidence of diseaseand to check malnutrition. The 10th FiveYear Plan (2002-2007) target of provid-ing potable drinking water to all villagesin India has not been achieved. UnderBharat Nirman (a new programme forrural reconstruction), it is now planned tocover the 55,067 uncovered habitationsin 4 years (2005-09). Rural Water Sup-ply is, however, beset with the problemof sustainability, maintenance, and waterquality. Thus though more than 95%coverage was achieved prior to BharatNirman, 0.28 million out of the 1.422million habitations in the country, haveslipped back from fully covered to par-tially covered status. Another 0.217 mil-lion habitations have problems with thequality of water; about 60,000 habita-tions face serious problems of salinity orarsenic and fluoride contamination.These habitations will also be taken upunder Bharat Nirman. The 11th Plan willemphasize full and timely realization ofthe Bharat Nirman targets.
‘Providing clean drinking water for all by 2009 and ensuring that there are no slip-backs by the end of the 11th Plan is among the monitorable Socio- Economic Targets of the 11th Plan’
The 11th Plan will also address issues ofsustainability by moving away whereverpossible from ground water to surfacewater resources. Where alternatesources do not exist or are not cost effec-tive, ground water recharge measureswill be insisted upon in the vicinity of theproject.
11th Plan to encourage commu-nity owned & managed projects
The Eleventh Plan proposes to moveaway from state implemented and man-aged projects to encourage communityowned and managed projects, like theSwajaldhara Programme. In the 10thPlan, Swajaldhara had a limited provi-sion of 20% of the allocation of the Ac-celerated Rural Water Supply Pro-gramme (ARWSP). It will need to be upscaled so that more and more schemesare community managed, reducing themaintenance burden and responsibilityof the state.
Focused IEC campaign for in-crease in sanitation coverage
Lack of sanitation is directly linked to anumber of waterborne diseases. It is nowgenerally acknowledged that unless100% coverage of the community isachieved and proper solid waste man-agement carried out, health indicatorswill not show significant improvement.Besides, toilets are essential for the dig-nity and safety of girls and women.Rural sanitation coverage was only 1%in the 1980s. With the launch of theCentral Rural Strategic Initiatives for In-clusive Development Sanitation Pro-gramme in 1986, the coverage im-proved to 4% in 1988 and then to 22%in 2001. The programme was modifiedas Total Sanitation Campaign in 1999changing the earlier supply driven, highsubsidy and departmentally executedprogramme to a low subsidy, demanddriven one, with emphasis on hygieneeducation. Five hundred and forty dis-tricts are covered under this programmeand the population coverage is expectedto increase to about 35% by the end ofthe 10th Plan.The subsidy regime in the current pro-gramme is only for Below Poverty Line(BPL) families. For full coverage to beachieved, however, Above Poverty Linefamilies will have to be motivated toswitch over from open defecation to useof toilets. The Information, Education,and Communication (IEC) campaign will,therefore, receive increased attention inthe 11th Plan. A solid waste manage-ment component is being included in theprogramme. These measures coupledwith a focused IEC campaign shouldsignificantly increase sanitation coveragein the 11th Plan.Steps are also being taken to link ruralsanitation with the rural health mission.The Nirmal Gram Puraskar, a rewardscheme for 100% open defecation freecommunities has been a motivating fac-tor and is picking up momentum as canbe seen from the number of communitiescompeting for the Puraskar.
With sufficient allocation of funds in the 11th Plan, the MDG goal for sani- tation can be met by 2010, and full coverage achieved between 2012 and 2015.
The strategy of inclusive growth pro-posed in the approach paper can com-mand broad based support only ifgrowth is seen to demonstrably bridgedivides and avoid exclusion or marginali-zation of large segments of the popula-tion in India. These divides manifestthemselves in various forms: between thehaves and the have-nots; between ruraland urban areas; between the employedand the under/unemployed; betweendifferent states, districts and communities;and finally between genders. Suchmarked inequalities are a matter of con-cern and, in some cases even shame.The 11th Plan has to ensure that thegrowth process helps to bridge thesedivides.
Community-based Water andSanitation Project in Peri-Urban Area of Siddhipur, Kathmandu
Siddhipur Water & Sanitation Users Com-mittee has constructed a new water supplysystem in Siddhipur, which consists of anew intake water treatment system, a distri-bution network and a pro-poor tariff sys-tem. More than 150 households have con-nected private taps to their homes and theusers’ committee is getting many requestsfor connections everyday. To improve thesanitation situation of the area, 100 ECO-SAN toilets, one toilet with communal sep-tic tank, 14 other toilets with septic tanks,186 improved pit are being set up. Simi-larly, 1km of drainage have been laid and1100 square meter of pavement havebeen brick paved. In addition, traditionalwater sources like wells & ponds have alsobeen rehabilitated under this project. EN-PHO has also organized various capacitybuilding programmes in support of thisproject under WAC Programme in Nepal.