Water, sanitation should be fundamental rights, say Nepali experts

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Kathmandu, Aug. 22 (ANI): Nepali experts appealed to the government to establish water and sanitation as fundamental rights in the new constitution, The Kathmandu Post reported on Saturday.

The paper quoted Rabin Lal Shrestha, research and advocacy manager at Water Aid in Nepal, a non-governmental organization, as saying that at the current rate of progress, the government will miss its ambitious target of providing water and sanitation to all by 2017.

He said there is a need for urgent action to meet the target in the given time.

Basanta Adhikari, a Nepali legal expert, the incorporation of water and sanitation as constitutional rights will help enforce a legal framework and take the government towards progressive realization of the goal of providing safe water and sanitation to all.

Adhikari said the country has already signed different international conventions on water and sanitation. It however lags behind in the implementation aspects.

According to a report of Water Aid in Nepal, about 14.2 million people do not have access to sanitation and 7.1 million lack access to safe drinking water in Nepal.

The report further states that diseases caused by inadequate access to water and sanitation are responsible for 10,500 child deaths in Nepal each year. (ANI)

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