After the Kanyashree project’s international acclaim, it was the turn of the state government’s rural development and rural water supply system that drew the World Bank and UNICEF’s attention.
Inviting the Mamata Banerjee-led West Bengal government to attend a seven-day seminar on rural development and rural water supply in Stockholm in Europe, the World Bank and UNICEF both praised the rural water supply projects undertaken by the Trinamool Congress government.
State panchayat minister Subrata Mukherjee is scheduled to leave for Stockholm on August 17, the day Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee will depart for Singapore where she would hold meetings to attract investments.
When contacted, Mukherjee said, “The World Bank has recognised our project of supplying filtered- and arsenic-free water to the rural households, nearly 40 per cent of which we have covered. We will ask for more grants for these projects. Other states do not face the problem of arsenic in water but we do, which is why we have set up several treatment plants to supply filtered water.”
Mukherjee added: “The World Bank has also praised the distribution system which we implemented.” Others who will accompany Mukherjee to Stockholm are state panchayat secretary and chief engineer of PHE department. The panchayat minister also discussed “certain projects” that his department has prepared for the development of rural infrastructure which will be presented to the World Bank after they reach the Swedish capital.]
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In December 2013, too, Mukherjee had visited the World Bank headquarters in Washington on invitation.