Asian Development Bank (ADB) on Wednesday said it has inked two agreements with the Centre for USD 412 million loans for water supply and rural connectivity projects in Jharkhand and Maharashtra. Under a USD 300 million loan agreement, ADB will provide the additional financing to scale up improvement of rural connectivity to help boost the rural economy in Maharashtra.
Another USD 112 million loan will be used to develop water supply infrastructure and strengthen capacity of urban local bodies for improved service delivery in four towns in Jharkhand. The additional financing for the ongoing Maharashtra Rural Connectivity Improvement Project will help improve an additional 1,100 rural roads and 230 bridges for a total length of 2,900 kms in 34 districts, ADB said in a release.
The ongoing project with USD 200 million financing, approved in August 2019, is already enhancing and maintaining the condition and safety of 2,100 kms of rural roads across Maharashtra. For Jharkhand, four water treatment plants, with a combined capacity of 275 million litres per day, will be established in the project towns to provide safe drinking water, meeting the national drinking water quality standards. The project will also establish 940 kms of water distribution network to provide continuous water supply to about 115,000 households, including those below the poverty line, scheduled caste and scheduled tribe members, and other vulnerable groups, ADB said in another release.
“To ensure sustainability, the project will strengthen the capacity of ULBs on urban service delivery and governance through the development of an asset management strategy and training on design and implementation of urban projects. “Innovative technologies will be introduced to minimize water losses in water treatment and distribution. The project also includes the use of a supervisory control and data acquisition system for water supply operation and geographic information system-based asset management in Ranchi,” it added.