Rayagada water crisis; govt projects still on papers

Rayagada: At a time when most of the places in the State are already facing water scarcity issue, apathy of the concerned departments to materialise the government projects is worsening the situation.

Bhanwari village under Kalyansinghpur block in the district is a home to 12 families of Niyamgiri Dongria Kondh tribal group. They depend on a single handpump installed in the area but it’s not enough to quench their thirst. They have to walk for over 2 kmts daily to fetch water but only to return with contaminated water.

“I drank the muddy water following which my health got severely affected. People are dying due to diarrhoea after consuming the water,” laments one Dongria.

“We are going to renovate one well in the area and have plans to drill more wells after getting proper site location, following which water problem can be solved,” said Kalyansinghpur Block Development Officer Pradeep Nayak.

Similar is the situation of Nuagaon village under Bisamkatak block which has about 100 families. The village has two handpumps but one is lying defunct, resulting in daily quarrel among the women’s to fetch water.

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Two years ago, the government had sanctioned Rs 12 lakh worth water projects for four villages in the area. However, the administration is yet to initiate the projects- only to increase the woes of the villagers.

When OTV approached Niranjan Sahu, executive engineer, water supply and sanitation, he said tenders for the projects would be floated at the earliest.

Its April, summer is already harsh; how far inviting tender at this eleventh hour will solve the water shortage issue here is a matter of grave concern.

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