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Delhi Budget: Water supply and sanitation rank high – The Indian Express

The outlay for water supply and sanitation in the 2022-23 budget has seen an increase as compared to the previous financial year. The proposed outlay for this year is Rs 7,610 crore, around 10% of the total budget estimate for the year. In comparison, the outlay for the 2021-22 financial year was Rs 3,274 crore, which was 5% of the total budget outlay for that year.
A total of Rs 6,710 crore has been proposed for water supply and sanitation projects, with the outlay for water supply schemes being higher than that for sanitation. Water supply projects include rehabilitation of existing water treatment plants, replacement of the old distribution system, and managing leakage.
The outlay for water supply subsidies to the consumer is around Rs 602 crore. The water bills of around 6.5 lakh consumers are zero every month under the scheme of providing 20-kilo litres of free water per month.
The outlay for sewerage and drainage projects includes the state government funding for the third phase of the Yamuna Action Plan that aims at cleaning the river. The allocation to provide sewerage facilities in unauthorised colonies and interceptor sewers has also seen an increase this year.
The budget also makes a provision of Rs 705 crore to revive the Najafgarh drain. Floating wetlands and aerators will be deployed in the drain to treat the water, and the area will be developed as a tourist destination.
In his budget speech, Deputy CM Manish Sisodia identified 24×7 clean drinking water and the clean Yamuna as “two more big dreams” that Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has given to the people of Delhi. “Better management of water coming to Delhi from outside, and better harvesting of rainwater will ensure 24 hours water in the coming three years,” he said. The work of “providing 100% sewer in unauthorised colonies” will be completed by the end of the year. He said that in two years “the Yamuna will be completely cleaned”.

Manoj Misra, former Indian Forest Service officer and convenor of the Yamuna Jiye Abhiyaan, said, “Any effort to improve the sewerage network is welcome. The claim to rejuvenate the Yamuna in two years will have to be taken with a pinch of salt. Taking care of the pollution load in the river is just one aspect of rejuvenating the river since it is an ecological challenge. But the only thing that is in the Delhi government’s hands is to reduce the pollution load in the river. It should be good enough if that is taken care of.”
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