Hyderabad: Minister for Municipal Administration and Urban Development K Taraka Rama Rao on Friday announced that the state government was working to turn all 142 municipalities into Open Defecation Free (ODF) + + urban local authorities in the state.
Speaking at a meeting held to observe Swachatha Diwas at the Bhongir dumping yard premises, Taraka Rama Rao pointed out that all cities in the state have ODFs recognised by the centre.
Although, he didn’t feel pleased with it. Eight municipalities in the state enjoyed the tag of ODF+ and two municipal corporations received ODF++ status, i.e. GHMC and Warangal Municipal Corporation.
The Department of Municipal Administration and Urban Development worked to achieve ODF++ status for all 142 municipalities in the state through the development of Faecal Sludge Treatment Plants (FSTPs), the establishment of toilets in accordance with the population, waste management initiatives and the composting system.
He said that 43 per cent of the population of the state resided in urban areas and that 50 per cent was likely to be affected in the next five years, which was reflective of rapid urbanisation.
For different reasons, including housing, schooling, health care facilities and others, people migrated from villages to towns. At this juncture, infrastructure growth is the responsibility of the state government and municipalities, so the state government has implemented master plans for comprehensive urbanisation in the state.
With a vision, Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao launched a new municipal act focused on citizens to ensure better services for the people.
He listed the provisions contained in the new municipal act-2019, including 10% of the green budget and the timeline for the issuance of housing building permits. In the act, it was required that each municipality should spend 10 percent of its greenery development budget to prevent cities from turning into concrete jungles.
In the province, 1326 nurseries, 197 dry resource centres and 140 compost yards were built in 142 municipalities. Wastage had been piled up for decades in the towns’ dumpling yards, he said bio-mining was taken up to extract the waste and recycle it.
Announcing the extension of the Pattana Pragathi Annual Awards to the highest performing urban local authorities every year on February 24, which was the launch date of the Pattana Pragathi programme. The awards will be in five classifications, i.e. Municipality model, conservation of water supplies, sanitation management, developing greenery and bio-mining.
He recalled that since February of this year, the state government has extended a total of Rs 1112 crores to municipalities under the PattanaPragathi scheme.
Reporting that the Chief Minister was committed to the welfare of municipal health employees, he said that by the fifth day of each month, wages were deposited into their bank accounts. Special rewards were also provided to them during the COVID pandemic for their services, he said. (INN)