BARA, Feb 26: Nepal Drinking Water Corporation (NDWC) Executive Chairman Jitendra Singh, who is also a leader of the Tarai Madhes Democratic Party (TMDP), is found to have distributed arsenic-free shallow tube wells meant for the public to his party activists.
For the fiscal year 2011/2012, Bara district had provided 142 sets of subsidized arsenic-free hand pumps to be installed at public places in 13 VDCS. However, Chairperson Singh is found to have installed most of such pumps on private land belonging to his party cadres.
The Bara District Water Supply and Sanitation Division had ordered that such tube wells should be installed only on public land.
According to Ijahar Ansari, a resident of Bishrampur VDC-2 of Bara, Singh provided him an arsenic free hand pump for being a TMDP activist. Another hand pump has been installed at the distance of 10 meters from Ansari´s place for the benefit of the family of one Jaya Mangal Yadav. Jayamangal and his nephew are also associated with TMDP.
Similarly, other benefitting from Singh´s largesse are Ram Binaya Singh, Shivaji Sah, Birendra Singh and Bindeshwar Singh, all of them TMDP cadres.
However, Chairman Singh claimed that the hand pumps were installed at public places for use by maximum number of poeple. Jiyalal Thakur, Bara district chairman of Nepal Sadhvawana Party, said that his party activists are pestering him for arsenic-free hand pumps after NDWC Executive Chairman Singh provided such hand pumps to his party cadres.
Surendra Prasad Sharma, engineer at Bara district Drinking Water and Sanitation Office, said that the arsenic free hand pumps should be installed to benefit maximum number of people.
Ram Avatar, the contractor who was awarded the contract to install the susidized tube well in the district, informed that in many places TMDP activist forced to install the hand pumps at the places of their choice.
The VDCs -- Piparpati, Bisunpur, Srinagar Bairiya, Banauli Pachrauta, Kachorba, Mahendra Aadarsha, Beldari, Pakadiya, Laxmipur Kotwali, Kundawa, Pathara, Hariharpur, Bhagawanpur and Inwarmal -- where the arsenic free hand pumps have been installed fall in Singh´s electoral constituency.