Odisha Chief Secretary directed officials to expedite completion of 60 sewage plants in different urban local bodies

Bhubanswar: Chief Secretary Asit Tripathy directed to expedite completion of 60 sewage plants in different urban local bodies (ULBs) of the State.

Tripathy further directed to intensify awareness and enforcement activities simultaneously in all ULBs.

The Chief Secretary directed to enforce that all households should get connected to the sewage system wherever it is available. In the absence of centralised sewage network, they should make use of the cesspool system already made available in all ULBs for safe disposal of the sewage.

Presenting the updates, Municipal Administration Director Sangramjit Nayak said, “The State has made substantial progress in the matter during last four years. In 2015 there was only one operational sewage treatment plant ( STP) in the State providing facility for treatment of 2 per cent of the urban faecal sludge. In 2016 construction of nine plants were taken up with annual budgetary allocations. Urban sanitation policy and strategies have been put in place with definite institutional arrangements. By now, seven STPs have been operationalized.Sixty more are in different phases of completion”.

The Chief Secretary directed to tag the small ULBs to nearest STP for ensuring 100 per cent population coverage. Tripathy further directed to tag the nearby rural areas to different STPs in ULBs for extending the benefits to the rural population as well.

Principal Secretary Mathivathanan said, “Since construction and operationalisation of the STPs takes time of four to five years and containing water pollution is an urgent requirement, the interim low cost technique of Deep Row Entrenchments (DREs) has been rolled out in different ULBs. It is a tried and tested method for safe disposal of faecal sludge and septage”.

The interim measure has been adopted from November, 2017. As of now, 84 such DREs have been developed which provide safe sewage disposal service to 83 per cent of the population. With completion of sixty permanent STPs, all these households would be included under that service.

Director Municipal Administration Nayak further appraised that as of now around 200 cesspool emptier vehicles have been procured by the State and those have been given to ULBs for mechanised emptying of septic tanks and pits. The de-suldging rates have been rationalised and brought down to Rs 1,000 per family septic tank/pit. The standard operating procedure for cesspool operations has also been put in place in all ULBs.

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