Describing the role of Communication & Capacity Development Unit (CCDU) as most important part for ensuring safe drinking water and sanitation in the State, Minister for PHE, Irrigation & Flood Control, ShamLal Sharma has said that Government will further strengthen the CCDU so that it can achieve its objectives in a more professional way.Addressing a press conference here today, the Minister said that Central Government has earmarked five percent share of the overall budget of PHE Department for the purpose of creating awareness amongst the masses about the sanitation and usage of water and set up an exclusive body namely CCDU to implement this component. He said the functioning of the CCDU will be further toned up so that it can reach out at the grass root level to educate the people about the sanitation and judicious use of water with the involvement of various stakeholders. The Government has also framed Village Water Sanitation Committees (VWSCs) in every Panchayat villages across the State for the purpose. The VWSCs will comprise with Sarpanch, Junior Engineer, Health Worker, ASHA workers, Members of NGOs of the concerned area and the Committee will sensitize the rural masses about the sanitation, water usages, impart training for water testing through Testing Kits which will be provided by the CCDU. The VWSCs will work under the direct supervision of CCDU functionaries who will be headquartered at district and block level.The Minister said that CCDU will step up its state-wide campaign for sensitizing the masses about the conservation, preservation of water resources and water usages through different mediums including seminars, print/electronic media and with the active involvement of credible NGOs, educational institutions, health department and PRIs.
The entire State will be distributed in 9 zones and each zone will be given specific targets. The districts will be catered by District Water Sanitation Mission (DWSM) and rural areas will be looked after by the Village Water Sanitation Committees (VWSCs), The CCDU will also institute suitable awards for inpiduals and Committees who will be best performers in the field, said the Minister.Maintaining that safe drinking water is fundamental right of all citizens, the Minister said that Government will make all out efforts to ensure this essential commodity to every inpidual across the State. He said CCDU which is also a part of Water and Sanitation Support Organization (WSSO) and a component of PHE Department are working in close coordination with Rural Development (NBA) and other departments in this direction. The functionaries of CCDU and Members of Committees will intensify their campaign to sensitize the masses about the judicious usages of water and conservation measures, he added.Urging the media to play their important role in this noble cause, the Minister stressed for highlighting the importance of water and its judicious use. He said this campaign cannot be carried forward without the active involvement of media houses. He appealed the electronic and print media to reserve a considerable slot for this noble issue on day to day basis so that the Government can save water for tomorrow and ensure proper sanitation and safe drinking water to the people.The media persons also asked several questions and clarifications from the Minister on the subject, which he replied.Commissioner/Secretary PHE, Dr.PawanKotwal, Executive Director, CCDU, J&K, Ms. Bharti Vaid, Chief Engineer, PHE, Jammu, Mr. K.K. Gupta, Joint Director Information, Ms. Samita Sethi were also present on the occasion.