Community participation was an integral part of construction activities under Netherlands Assisted Projects. The responsibility of community participation activities, under Netherlands Assisted Projects was entrusted to M/S PSU Foundation by Royal Netherlands Embassy. But the agreement with PSU Foundation was terminated in Sept. 1997 and responsibility of community participation activities was assigned another agency M/S JPS Associates. But agreement of this agency was also terminated and due to this the progress of works under Netherlands Assisted Projects was suffering.
In view of this UP Jal Nigam, on request of Royal Netherlands Embassy, in October 1998, submitted a proposal to carry out the Community Participation activities. The proposal was accepted by Royal Netherlands Embassy.
Subsequently UP Jal Nigam in Feb 1999, created Community Participation Unit, vide Managing Director, U. P. Jal Nigam’s office order no. 421/pra-1/Mukhyalaya Stha (purva) /98 dated 22.02.99 for carrying community participation activities in Water Supply and Environmental Sanitation projects. This unit started work in June 1999. The unit was put under the administrative control of Chief Engineer (Dutch), U. P. Jal Nigam, Lucknow. Later on in view of growing importance of community participation in development projects, this unit was named as Community Participation Cell. U.P.
After completion of Netherlands funded Rural Water Supply and Environmental Sanitation Programme in Uttar Pradesh, the unit was entrusted to carryout UNICEF assisted programmes in the state of Uttar Pradesh. Presently in addition to UNICEF assisted programmes Community Participation Unit is also implementing works related to “Water Quality Survey” and “National Rural Drinking Water Quality Monitoring & Surveillance Prograrmme” in the state of Uttar Pradesh.
Experience gained over a period of nearly two decades of the Netherlands funded Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Programme in Uttar Pradesh has led to the inclusion of the community participation component (CPC) in the Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Project as it is very important for its sustainability. The importance of this has also been highlighted in RGNDWM, Government of India’s Guidelines 1999, wherein States are being encouraged to institutionalize community-based rural water supply and sanitation programmes, which secure active participation of beneficiaries and the Village Panchayats to plan, execute, own, operate and maintain rural water supply & sanitation facilities.
As mentioned above, Community Participation activities were taken up in water supply projects for the first time in 1986 Under Dutch assisted projects. While implementation of hardware was taken up by U. P. Jal Nigam, the community related works such as Site Selection for installation of New Hand Pumps (IM II), Review of Corrective Intervention in existing Hand Pumps, Formation & Trainings of Ward Committees and Collection of Beneficiaries Contribution towards capital cost etc. were taken care of by Project Support Unit (PSU), which was established by Dutch embassy for assisting U. P. Jal Nigam. However, when the contract of PSU was terminated in 1997, U. P. Jal Nigam established Community Participation Unit to facilitate community participation activities in districts Siddarth Nagar under Dutch Sub Project-VI(B) and in district Aligarh, Badaun, Ballia, Kanpur Dehat Moradabad and Unnao. The details of activities taken up is as below:-