Potable water supply target not met: CAG

Policy matters this week
Rural India walks far to get water. (Source: IWP Flickr Photos) Rural India walks far to get water. (Source: IWP Flickr Photos)

National Rural Drinking Water Programme: Targets remain unachieved

According to a report by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG), the National Rural Drinking Water Programme has been unable to achieve its target of supplying safe drinking water to all rural habitations, government schools and anganwadis by 2017. The scheme was envisaged to provide potable drinking water to 50 percent rural population and household connections to 35 percent rural households. The failure in achieving targets has been attributed to lack of proper planning and poor funds management which has led to undue delays in completion of various schemes and cost overrun of Rs 2,212 crore.

Parliamentary panel tells government to make pure and safe water available

Terming groundwater as a bank with 'fixed deposit', the parliamentary panel has advised the government to allow its limited use in extraordinary situations only. The panel has also suggested that the government set up water packaging industries based on a public-private-partnership model. As per the panel, it is the government's responsibility to end the gap between demand and supply of water for consumption and therefore, the government must play an important role in making pure and safe water available.

Centre launches PARIVESH, a single window hub for all environmental clearances

The environment ministry has launched the proactive and responsive facilitation by interactive, virtuous and environmental single-window hub, abbreviated as PARIVESH. The tool will allow automation of the entire process of submitting applications for various types of clearances like environment, forest, wildlife and coastal regulation zone. The highlights of PARIVESH include single registration, single sign-in, a unique ID for all types of clearances required for a particular project and a single window interface for the project proponent to submit applications.

Centre approves DPR for Pennaiyar and Palar river link project

The water ministry has given its go-ahead to link the Pennaiyar and Palar rivers in Tamil Nadu. The project worth Rs 648 crore envisages diversion of 86 million cubic metre of floodwater from Pennaiyar river to Palar river by a canal stretching 54 km. The project will be implemented by the state government and will cover Krishnagiri and Vellore districts. Also, the link canal would help in the recharge of the existing command area of 9,850 hectares and provide drinking water to 1.52 lakh people en route. 

To boost farming sector, government to implement Swaminathan panel report

The agriculture minister has informed that the government has made budgetary provisions of Rs 2.11 lakh crore to implement the Swaminathan Commission report. In 2006, the Swaminathan panel had advised the then government to give more attention to enhancing farmers' income along with agro-based thinking to uplift the farm sector. Taking into consideration the recommendations of the commission, the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) has developed 795 improved varieties of crops in the last four years to increase productivity and eliminate malnutrition.

This is a roundup of important policy matters from August 8- 14, 2018. Also, read the news this week.


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