Legislative Assembly Speaker Kagodu Thimmappa on Monday suggested to the government to take the district and taluk administration officials to task for ineffective implementation of drinking water related works.

Mr. Thimmappa, who was not satisfied with the reply given by Minister for Revenue V. Srinivas Prasad, told the government to “wake the officials up” who have shown laxity in the implementation of works at the district level.

The government has been saying that Rs. 25 crore had been released to Shimoga district for tackling drinking water shortage and drilling borewells. But the district had received only Rs. 3 crore so far, the Speaker said. Earlier, Mr. Prasad said there was no shortage of funds to take up drinking water-related works in districts and Deputy Commissioners have been asked to clear all pending bills of borwells drilled so far.

Rural Development and Panchayat Raj Minister H.K. Patil said a circular had been issued to utilise funds for operation and maintenance of drinking water schemes. The department had released Rs. 38 crore to address the problem. However, under the Calamity Relief Fund, the Centre had banned drilling of borewells, he said.

Leader of the Opposition H.D. Kumaraswamy demanded that the government take steps to mitigate drinking water crisis in 155 drought-hit taluks.