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Union Minister For Jal Shakti Lauds Achievement Of Fivefold Increase In ODF Plus Villages In Just One Year

Newdelhi:31/3/23:The Union Minister for Jal Shakti, Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat today lauded the achievement of a fivefold increase in ODF Plus villages in India under the Swachh Bharat Mission – Grameen, Phase – II, in just one year, with more than 40 percent of India’s inhabited villages having declared themselves ODF Plus. The Union Minister, addressing the media, asserted that ODF Plus villages increased from 46,121 villages (7.4%) in March 2022 to 2,38,973 villages (40.21%) in March 2023. Shri Shekhawat further added “Out of these 2,38,973 ODF Plus villages, 1,60,709 are in the ODF Plus Aspiring category, 27,409 in the ODF Plus Rising category and 50,855 are in the ODF Plus Model category”

Shri Shekhawat applauded the States and UTs for having achieved more than 2.38 lakh ODF Plus villages compared to only 46,480 in March 2022. Referring to his recent participation in the UN Water Conference 2023, he said “India has earned recognition around the world and is considered a role model in the field of sanitation.  Swachh Bharat Mission Grameen which ensured access to sanitation to the whole of rural India was indeed a game changer”.

The Union Minister also announced that the National Scheme Sanctioning Committee (NSSC) which met on March 28, 2023, for consideration of the Annual Implementation Plans (AIPs) of all the States and Union Territories has approved the State/UT budgets to the tune of Rs. 52,049 crores for SBM-G Phase II activities through convergence for the Financial Year 2023-24.  States have been informed of the tentative allocation of Rs. 14,030 crores in Central share funds for FY 2023-24.

On the performance of States, the 3 UTs’ of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Lakshadweep, Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu were not only ODF Plus, but all their villages were of the ODF Plus Model category, the Minister announced. He said that the top performing States were Telangana with 100% ODF Plus villages followed by Tamil Nadu with 95.7% ODF plus villages and Karnataka with 93.7% ODF plus villages.

On the other hand, the States making remarkable progress were Himachal Pradesh which moved from 18% ODF Plus villages in 2022 to 79% villages in 2023; followed by Madhya Pradesh which moved from 6% ODF Plus villages in 2022 to 62% villages in 2023; and Uttar Pradesh which moved from 2% ODF Plus villages in 2022 to 47% villages in 2023.  As far as the North East States were concerned, Mizoram has moved from 6% ODF Plus villages in 2022 to 35% villages in 2023

. Shri Shekhawat also reiterated the importance of the GOBARdhan initiative, its objective being to convert waste to wealth, manage rural biodegradable waste, generate rural income, and promote a circular economy.   The achievement under GOBARdhan which is being implemented in coordination with other stakeholder ministries as of date is 510 community GOBARdhan projects completed under SBM(G) along with 43 CBG projects under SATAT by MoP&NG and 36 projects under MNRE funding. In conclusion, the Minister called for the ‘Whole of Government’ and ‘Whole of Society’ approaches which are key to achieving 100% ODF Plus villages or Sampoorna Swachhata by 2024.

About Editor in chief

Ashok Palit has completed his graduation from Upendranath College Soro, Balasore and post graduation from Utkal University in Odia Language and literture.. He has also carved out a niche for himself as a scribe of eminence after joining the profession in 1988. He is also an independent media production professional. He brings loads of experience to Advanced Media, Ashok Palit as a cineaste has been active in film criticism for over three decades. As a film society activist, he soared to eminence for his profound commitment to the art film appreciation and aesthetics of cinema. His mode of discourse is often erudite but always lucid and comprehensible marked by a perfect acumen so rare in the field. A film aesthete with an immense fond of critical sensibilities, he wrote about growth and development of odia cinema in New Indian Express, The Times of India, The Hindustan Times, The Asian Age and Screen. He has been working as an Editor for Cine Samaya from 2002-2004.. He had made solid contribution on cinema in many odia Dailies and weekly such as Samaj, Prajatantra, Dharatri, Samaya, Satabadi, and weekly Samaya.

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