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Ministry of Urban Development
PRESIDENT GIVES AWAY NATIONAL URBAN WATER AWARDS 2009
WATER AND SANITATION TO BE ACCORDED DUE PRIORITY-REDDY.

Thursday, August 13, 2009
20:1 IST

The President, Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil urged people to apply their efforts to improve service delivery of basic infrastructure in an efficient and equitable manner. She further stated that provision of clean drinking water and sanitation are vital components for creating conducive living conditions for city populations. She stated this while speaking at National Urban Water Awards 2009, function, here today. The President also referred to Gandhiji who emphasised that, “the first condition of any municipal life is decent sanitation and unfailing supply of pure water”. This is an important message and we should fulfill the vision of the Father of the Nation, she added.

She mentioned that urban areas throughout the country are making efforts to improve the access, quality, quantity, efficiency and sustainability of urban water and sanitation services. This is being done by redefining policies and institutional arrangements, using better technologies, improving management practices, providing targeted subsidies to the poor and forging new partnerships.

Speaking on the occasion Shri S.Jaipal Reddy, Union Minister for Urban Development stated that Water and Sanitation will be accorded due priority under the newly approved scheme for development of satellite towns and counter magnets around seven megacities. The Minister informed that under the recently launched Phase I of the Asian Development Bank assisted North Eastern Region Urban Development Programme which is to be implemented at a cost of Rs 1371 crores in five capital cities i.e Kohima, Agartala, Aizawl, Gangtok and Shillong, 4 water supply projects, 2 solid waste management sectors will be implemented. Water and sanitation projects are also being sanctioned under the 10% lumpsum scheme for infrastructure development in the North East region including Sikkim.

Shri Reddy said that the water and sanitation sector which covers water supply, sewerage, solid waste management and storm water drainage accounts for about 73.43 % of the total number of projects sanctioned under JNNURM as on date and 80.81% of the total cost of projects sanctioned. In absolute terms, the number of such projects sanctioned is 340 out of a total of 463 projects sanctioned under the scheme. In addition, 4 projects with an approved cost of Rs 116 crore have been sanctioned for preservation of water bodies. He added that under the Urban Infrastructure Development Scheme for Small and Medium Towns (UIDSSMT), out of a total of 969 projects, the water and sanitation sector accounts for 828 projects i.e which is as high as 85% on terms of the cost, the share of the water and sanitation sector would be 92% i.e Rs 18409.91 crores out of Rs 19833.11 crores. In addition, 9 projects at a cost of Rs 30.03 crores have been sanctioned for the preservation of water bodies. He mentioned that the National Action Plan for Climate Change envisages a number of measures in the water and sanitation sector under the National Mission for Sustainable Habitat which is being piloted by the Ministry of Urban development as well as the National Water Mission which is piloted by the Ministry of Water Resources.

The National Urban Water Awards, 2009, have been instituted by the Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD) with the purpose of recognizing urban local bodies, water boards and organizations which have taken significant steps towards efficient delivery of water and sanitation services in order to promote excellence in this sector. The awards cover six categories:
a) Technical innovation,
b) Financial reforms,
c) Services to the poor,
d) Citizen services and Governance,
e) Public-Private Partnership and
f) Urban sanitation.

The Administrative Staff College of India, Hyderabad (ASCI) and Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ), an international cooperation enterprise for sustainable development with worldwide operations owned by the Federal Republic of Germany are the MoUD’s partners in this endeavour.

In the “Technical Innovation” category, the winner is Town Municipal Council, Kundapura for its achievement in the area of “reduction in non- revenue water and improved service delivery” which the city has been able to achieve despite its small size and limited resources. The runner up is Surat Municipal Corporation for its efforts in institutionalizing “energy efficiency in water management” through Energy Efficiency Cell and use of biogas from sewage treatment plants for power generation.

In the “Financial Reform” category, the winner is Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board for it’s achievement in “cost recovery through effective billing and collection” facilitated by citizen friendly interface such as spot billing, 24X7 payment facilities through Kaveri Kiosks, 100% metering and GIS applications. The runner up is Karnataka Urban Water Supply & Drainage Board for its effort in “improving water services through financial reforms in Hubli-Dharwad” through effective metering, 100% spot billing, reduction of non-revenue water and barcoded Tap Cards.

In the “Services to the Poor” Category, the winner is Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation for its efforts in “providing access to 24X7 water supply to the urban poor” through pro-poor measures such as reduced access cost, network extension in poor areas, simplified procedures and delinking of services to land tenure. The runner up is Vijayawada Municipal Corporation for its efforts in “providing subsidies and incentives for water supply to the urban poor” through reduced water connection charges and monthly tariff as well as delinking of water services to land tenure.

The “Citizen Services and Governance” category, the co-winners are Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai and Jamshedpur Utility and Services Company (JUSCO). The Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai has implemented a State-of-the-Art Information and Communication Technology enabled systems for citizen friendly payment and grievance redressal including payments through Mobile Phones, Internet, Cybercafes and Kiosks. JUSCO introduced a customer centred approach through Sahyog Kendras offering single point interface for customers. It offers service level guarantees to its customers and has undertaken service level improvements based on customer feedback. Periodic compliance reports and third party assessments are also carried out.

In the “Public-Private Partnership” category, the winner is Karnataka Urban Infrastructure Development and Finance Corporation for its efforts towards “Providing 24/7 water supply in Hubli-Dharwad, Belgaum and Gulbarga” in partnership with the three Municipal Bodies. The project is implemented in public private partnership mode in pilot areas and has generated demand for 24X7 water supply at city level. Social mobilization and pro-poor approaches are integral part of the initiative. The initiative also establishes willingness of people to pay for improved services. The runner up is Nagpur Municipal Corporation which has been able to demonstrate the benefits of 24X7 water supply in a pilot zone implemented under PPP framework.

In the “Urban Sanitation” category, the winner is Kalyani Municipality for its efforts in “Community Led Total Sanitation” which has led to Kalyani being declared as ‘open defacation free’ by the State Government. The merit of the initiative lies in promoting behavioral change and social mobilization initated by committed leadership. The Kulgaon-Badlapur Municipal Council has been identified for special mention by the Advisory Group for its initiative in implementing eco-sanitation technologies for institutional sanitation.

TFK./AS/Water Awards09
Following is the text of the speech of Shri S.Jaipal Reddy, Union Minister for Urban Development on the National Urban Water Awards function.

Hon’ble President of India, Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil, Honble Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission, Shri Montek Singh Ahluwalia, my colleague, Minister of State for Urban Development Shri Sougata Roy, Dr M. Ramachandran, Secretary, Ministry of Urban Development, mayors and elected representatives, ladies and gentlemen.

We have gathered here today to celebrate the achievements of urban local governments and water boards in improving water and sanitation services in urban areas. It is very heartening to see the active involvement of elected representatives, municipal and water board functionaries from all over our country.

I would like to welcome and thank her Excellency for gracing the occasion. The presence of the Honble President of India is indicative of the importance that the Government of India attaches to the issues of water and sanitation and will motivate all the stakeholders in the sector such as the cities, water utilities, citizens, private sector utilities to innovate and strive for excellence in the provision of these services.

I have been privileged to be associated with the urban water and sanitation sector since the year 2005 and the position which I am holding has given me the opportunity to introduce and catalyse much needed changes in this sector. The number of projects sanctioned for the water and sanitation under Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission is testimony of Government’s commitment to the sector.

As most of you are aware, the Government launched the reform linked Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission along with Urban Infrastructure Development Scheme for Small and Medium Towns (UIDSSMT), which is the most ambitious and comprehensive scheme in the urban sector in the history of India, in December 2005. The total outlay for the Urban Infrastructure and Governance component of JNNURM which is administered by my Ministry, is Rs 31500 crore for the Mission period i.e 2005-2012. I am delighted to inform you all that the water and sanitation sector which covers water supply, sewerage, solid waste management and storm water drainage accounts for about 73.43 % of the total number of projects sanctioned as on date and 80.81% of the total cost of projects sanctioned. In absolute terms, the number of such projects sanctioned is 340 out of a total of 463 projects sanctioned under the scheme. In addition, 4 projects with an approved cost of Rs 116 crore have been sanctioned for preservation of water bodies.

Water supply projects sanctioned under JNNURM incorporate features such as reduction of Non Revenue Water below 15%, volumetric tariff, 100% metering of all connections, creation of water districts with bulk flow metering and district metering areas, 24x7 water supply etc. In respect of sewerage and sanitation, JNNURM has enabled cities to improve coverage of sewer networks and treatment capacities which may not have happened otherwise. This is likely to have positive health and environmental outcomes and reduce water borne diseases which are the main cause of infant mortality especially in slums and localities inhabited by economically weaker sections of society, apart from the quality of water bodies in and around the cities.

Similarly in the case of solid waste management, an integrated approach covering segregation at source, primary and secondary collection, transportation of waste to designated site, processing of waste and scientific and hygienic disposal has been adopted. Moreover, all projects incorporate provisions for waste processing facilities including composting, pelletisation and waste to energy and construction of sanitary landfill. Once these projects are implemented, I am optimistic that the cities and towns where they are located will show dramatic improvements in terms of overall cleanliness and hygiene. For cities and towns traditionally crippled by water logging and flooding problems, JNNURM has provided an opportunity to address the issue of inadequate drainage facility in a holistic manner.

Under the Urban Infrastructure Development Scheme for Small and Medium Towns (UIDSSMT), out of a total of 969 projects, the water and sanitation sector accounts for 828 projects i.e which is as high as 85% on terms of the cost, the share of the water and sanitation sector would be 92% i.e Rs 18409.91 crores out of Rs 19833.11 crores. In addition, 9 projects at a cost of Rs 30.03 crores have been sanctioned for the preservation of water bodies.

Outside the JNNURM umbrella, two mega projects have been sanctioned for two major cities i.e the Brihanmumbai storm water drainage project for Mumbai city at a total cost of Rs 1200 crore and the Seawater Reverse Osmosis Desalination Project for Chennai city to be constructed at Nemelli at a cost of about Rs 1000 crore. Once these projects are implemented fully, it is expected that the citizens of these two cities will get a much needed respite from the problems of flooding and acute water scarcity which they have been suffering for too long. Under the recently launched Phase I of the Asian Development Bank assisted North Eastern Region Urban Development Programme which is to be implemented at a cost of Rs 1371 crores in five capital cities i.e Kohima, Agartala, Aizawl, Gangtok and Shillong, 4 water supply projects, 2 solid waste management sectors will be implemented. Water and sanitation projects are also being sanctioned under the 10% lumpsum scheme for infrastructure development in the North East region including Sikkim. Water and Sanitation will be accorded due priority under the newly approved scheme for development of satellite towns and counter magnets around seven megacities.

The Ministry of Urban Development has been in the forefront of attempts to usher in critical reforms in the water and sanitation sector as well as creation of infrastructure through JNNURM and other initiatives like Service Level Benchmarking, National Urban Sanitation Policy, NERUDP etc. We are also conscious of the fact that the phenomenon of climate change will throw up fresh challenges in the water and sanitation sector necessitating the need for mainstreaming practices such as conservation through low water use toilets, water audits, achieving higher energy in water and waste water pumping, recycling of waste water, desalination, reduction of methane gas emission etc. The National Mission for Sustainable Habitat piloted by my Ministry and the National Water Mission piloted by the Ministry of Water Resources which are components of the Prime Minister’s Action Plan for Climate Change will address these issues.

Given the scale of challenge we face in the water and sanitation sector, it is imperative that we promote excellence through recognition of innovations in the sector and sharing of best practices. The National Urban Water Awards have been instituted by the Ministry in this context in partnership with the Administrative Staff College of India and the GTZ. Last year, we saw important initiatives like the Kulgaon-Badlapur Municipal council’s hydraulic modeling to transform an intermittent supply to 24x7 water supply, implementation of an underground sewerage project through public participation in Alandur led by the Chairperson, 24x7 water supply in Navi Mumbai and the like. This year, we are happy to see even greater participation and we hope that the search for excellence will gain momentum year after year till we achieve our goal of adequate and safe drinking water to all our people.

I am sure that each one of the initiatives show cased under the National Urban Water Awards 2009 programme is a lesson in itself and is worthy of emulation. Every entry is a winner and we acknowledge the leadership and contribution of the persons who have made it possible. I would like to compliment my colleagues in the Ministry, ASCI and GTZ for this endeavour. I hope to see an urban India which is able to provide quality water and sanitation services to all its citizens.

Jai Hind

 

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