Value for every drop
in late June, when the approval of the us $59.6 million loan from the World Bank (wb) for the Uttar Pradesh Rural Water Supply and Environmental Sanitation Project (uprwsesp) was announced, it did not sound like the beginning of something new. But the staff appraisal report (sar) of the project dated May 28, 1996, reveals that the project was heralding the entry of privatisation into the hitherto government-dominated sector of rural water supply. The director, project management unit (pmu), Parmeshwaran Iyer said that this is the first time in India that rural water supply is being privatised on such a scale.
Although all this is happening in the name of community participation, there is little likelihood of genuine community participation in the manner the project has been designed. For example, the eligibility criteria of service organisations (sos)