Patna : Bihar is lagging far behind other states in providing drinking water through piped water supply schemes in the villages.

The latest report of CAG presented in the BIhar legislature on Monday, has found that only 6 pc of the rural population was getting piped water supply against the national average of 41 pc.

The report says 94 pc of the villages were still dependent upon hand pumps for drinking water. No water testing laboratories were set up. Providing piped water supply in the villages is one 7 ‘resolves’ of Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.

The CAG report was presented to the chairman of the Public Accounts Committee Nand Kishore Yadav by principal AG of Bihar in assembly. Report detected financial irregularities in different rural development schemes and said fraudulent withdrawals were made in primary health centres at Bodh Gaya, Paliganj and Bodh Gaya to Rs 9 crore.

National rural drinking water programme could not yield intended result and people did not get safe drinking water despite an expenditure of Rs 609 crore till December last year. CAG attributed the failure to effective planning, poor implementation and weak financial management.

CAG regretted the integrated child development scheme was also a failure in the state as the staff in the field, including CDPOs and supervisors, were not properly trained.

Most of the anganvadi centres did not have supervisors and at many places, mid-day meal was shown as supplied to the beneficiaries, but in fact, the beneficiaries, the children, were left starved.

The social welfare department neither identified the malnourished nor severely malnourished children nor set any target to reduce prevalence of underweight children and anemia.

Quality of services in the anganvadi centres were also compromised as there were no toilets, drinking water, kitchen and utensils and 72 pc of the centres did not have their own buildings.

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Free Press Journal