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Archive Photo: Union Minister of Jal Shakti, Gajendra Singh Shekhawat

  • Capacity strengthening Initiative for 2.5 lakh panchayats launched.
  • 2800 field trainers to strengthen the capacity of panchayats for Swachh Bharat Mission and rural water supply.

India: The Union Minister of Jal Shakti, Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, today launched the capacity strengthening initiative of the Department of Drinking Water and Sanitation (DDWS), Ministry of Jal Shakti, in Ranchi, Jharkhand. He was joined at the event by the Minister of State for the Ministry of Jal Shakti, Rattan Lal Kataria, Chief Minister of Jharkhand, Raghubar Das, and Minister of the Drinking Water and Sanitation, Government of Jharkhand, Ramchandra Sahis. This initiative will create a pool of 2800 field trainers in its initial trainings, who will reach out to around 2.5 lakh Gram Panchayats across the country.

The initiative seeks to ensure the sustainability of Open Defecation Free (ODF) villages created under the Swachh Bharat Mission in the long term and enable field trainers and members of PRIs (Panchayat Raj Institutions) to create the capacity to manage solid and liquid wastes as well as improve access to safe and adequate drinking water supply.

Addressing more than 6000 Mukhiyas, Jal Sahiyas, Swachhagrahis and others present on the occasion, Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat emphasized the need for people’s participation highlighting that it is now time to turn the “Jal Ka Andolan” into “Jan Ka Andolan” to avert the impending water crisis. He appreciated the role of people who have committed themselves towards the cause of the Swachh Bharat Mission. Because of their efforts, in ODF and sanitized villages lakhs of lives have been saved, he added. He urged the people to re-energize their efforts for enabling sustained safe sanitation practices and expanding their efforts towards the provision of piped water supply to every household.

The Minister of State, Ministry of Jal Shakti, Rattan Lal Kataria also appreciated the role played by the various stakeholders in making Jharkhand State ODF and reiterated that the country is on track to achieve an ODF India by 2nd October 2019, on the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.

Addressing the gathering, Secretary, DDWS, Parameswaran Iyer shared the details of the capacity building training programme. He shared that by January 2020, four Field Trainers (FTs) from each district will be trained through 5-day Training of Trainers (ToTs) organized by the DDWS. The FTs would then train Sarpanchs, village secretaries and Swachhagrahis in their districts through a 3-day field training supported by the states and the districts, completing the entire exercise by March 2020.

The event concluded with an award ceremony recognizing the outstanding contributions in the field of sanitation.

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