Durga Shanker Mishra, Secretary, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA), during his interaction with the Chief Secretary/Principal Secretary/ senior officials of the States of Himachal Pradesh & Uttarakhand last month, appreciated the progress made by the States under AMRUT Mission and requested them to implement the projects expeditiously so that the intended benefits would reach the people timely. He advised them to complete all the projects within the extended Mission period up to 31st March, 2021 so as to avail the Central Assistance (CA) which is 90% in the case of the two hill States. During his interaction, it was informed that 32 projects have been completed and 41 projects are under implementation in the State of Himachal Pradesh. In Uttarakhand, against a SAAP size of Rs. 593 crore, 151 projects have been taken up. Of these, 47 projects have been completed and 100 projects are under implementation.
It was informed that Himachal Pradesh is ranked 15th and Uttarakhand 24th in AMRUT’s National rankings. Appreciating the efforts made by the States, Secretary, MoHUA requested them to strive further to enhance their performance and ensure that they are among the top 10 States. Himachal Pradesh has met its target of 13,003 new household water tap connections by providing over 17,600 new connections. Uttarakhand has provided 36,554 new connections so far. Uttarakhand was requested to expedite the connections and fulfil the target expeditiously in order to achieve universal coverage. Secretary, MoHUA also emphasized on the need to guard against poor plumbing leading to leakages and suggested capacity building of the plumber etc.
Himachal Pradesh has so far provided 26,034 sewer connections against a target of 23,006 connections and Uttarakhand has given 24,818 new connections. 51,793 households have been covered under septage management in Himachal Pradesh. Uttarakhand was requested to expedite sewer connections so as to complete this work within the Mission period.
Himachal Pradesh has so far replaced 12,186 streetlights against the targeted 9,621 with LED lights, Uttarakhand has replaced 72,167 of the targeted 82,337 lights. Both the States were requested to expedite the replacement of lights and extend the process to the entire State.
Both the States have implemented OBPS system in their Mission cities. OBPS is part of ‘Ease of Doing Business’ and should be implemented in all the ULBs apart from Mission cities, Durga Shanker Mishra said.
The Credit Rating work has been completed in all Mission cities in the two States. One Mission city in each of the States has also received Investment Grade Rating(IGR). Both the States should work on credit enhancement plan for the cities with lower than IGR and consider floating Municipal Bonds for IGR cities.
Both the States were informed that the Ministry has developed a common Dashboard for all the Missions of the Ministry where information relating to all States/UT and cities would be available. The States/UT may use this facility for monitoring the progress. Secretary, MoHUA requested the states/UT to update the details of Missions regularly so that the progress would be updated in the portal/dashboard. This data is used for monitoring, reviewing and assessment of monthly rankings on the progress among the states.
“Catch the Rain” Campaign: Both the States were requested to initiate activities under “Catch the Rain” campaign. Secretary, MoHUA emphasized on the need to conserve water, and the objective of this campaign is to conserve/harvest every drop of water. This campaign is to incorporate rainwater harvesting in all the structures of the cities and should be undertaken immediately.