Bedi recalls 'clean up or no free rice' order after criticism

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"It shall be distributed to the beneficiaries on the village being certified clean", said Bedi. The certification shall also be cross checked to ensure its veracity. Last two years, I have not seen local representatives and concerned public officials determined to make rural Puducherry clean within a time frame.

Supporting the Congress-led Puducherry government in its tussle with the LG, the AAP said though the main opposition party of the country, the Congress, has double standards on the issue of federalism and its leaders have often sided with the LG in Delhi, in blatant attempts to undermine the elected Delhi government, the AAP still is of the view that Puducherry government should be allowed to function without the regular interference by the LG. "It will be given to you only on the condition that the village is clean", Ms Bedi said. He said the government, which spends several crores of rupees, engaging a private firm to keep the town limits clean, had failed to take similar initiatives in keeping the villages clean.

Notably, the scheme of free rice distribution benefits over half of Puducherry's population.

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She later wrote to Chief Minister V. Narayanasami informing him of her decision and her order to the Civil Supplies Commissioner to send notices to all the villages giving them time till May 31 to clean up their villages. I am sorry this can not go on. "It proves that she doesn't have undergone the pain of a common man", a tweet by user Rajkumar said. "I am sure my order will make community leaders proactive and they will make their villages clean within the one-month deadline that I have set", she said. "Today was the 155th weekend morning round", she added. The lieutenant governor also cited water-borne diseases affecting the village as a problem.

The communication under comment is an expression of my serious intent and concern about addressing the root causes of health hazards in rural areas and compel performance of community and administrative leadership.

As part of the "clarification" Bedi issued later, she said, "The intention of my direction in linking rural Open Defecation and cleanliness with free rice distribution is NOT To DENY any poor persons of their entitlement, since I have already sanctioned and directed to provide quality food grains to needy families..." Earlier also, Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy had charged the governor for putting an obstruction in the implementation of welfare schemes. "Parameswaran Iyer, secretary of the Union Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation shared that report with me today morning".

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