Purulia in West Bengal is the only urban area which is yet to achieve the “Open Defecation Status” in the country even as the Centre has rolled out the second phase of Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM) to make areas falling under Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) garbage-free in five years.
Union Housing and Urban Affairs Minister Hardeep Singh Puri has launched the operational guidelines for SBM 2.0 and Amrut 2.0.
Housing and Urban Affairs Secretary Durga Shankar Mishra said Purulia remains the only exception to join the ODF club whereas many other urban areas are improving their status to ODF+ and ODF++.
He said by 2025-26, the Central government aims to clear 15,000 acres, which is equivalent to 16 sq.km of land which is under legacy landfill.
“In the last 5-6 years, we have cleared around 3,500 acres or 12 sq.km area which were used for landfill. We have made good progress on processing municipal solid waste. We will achieve the target set by the PM,” Mishra said.
He claimed while the total quantity of municipal solid waste processed was barely 26,000 tonnes in 2014, now it has touched 98,000 tonnes. The daily generation of municipal solid waste is estimated at around 1.37 lakh tonnes.
Earlier speaking at the occasion, Puri said the second phases of both SBM and Amrut are set to transform the country into a real “swachh” country.
He said the Amrut mission was earlier covering only 500 cities, and the same will now expand to all the cities. Puri added that the scheme will not only provide water tap connections but will also help in realization of the real value of water.
The urban local bodies, which will go for reforms such as bringing down the share of non-revenue water to only 20 per cent, set up charging stations for electric vehicles, notification of property tax and user charges, rejuvenation of water bodies and rain water harvesting in all institutional buildings, will get incentives from the Central government under Amrut mission.
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