The Ministry of Urban Development, Government of India, is nodal Ministry in charge of various aspects of Urban Development including Urban Water Supply and Sanitation in the Country. The Ministry formulates the policies and strategies pertaining to various aspects of Urban Development including Water Supply, Sanitation and Municipal Solid Waste Management in the Country and also provides technical and financial assistance to the States.
The Central Public Health and Environmental Engineering Organisation (CPHEEO) is Technical Wing of the Ministry of Urban Development, Government of India, and deals with the matters related to Urban Water Supply and Sanitation Including Solid Waste Management in the Country.
The CPHEEO was constituted under the erstwhile Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) in 1953 as per the recommendations of the Environmental Hygiene Committee to deal with Water Supply and Sanitation in the Country. In 1973-74, the CPHEEO was affiliated to the Ministry of Urban Development (erstwhile Ministry of Works & Housing).Since then, it is functioning as the technical wing of the Ministry.
As per the Constitution of India, “Water, that is to say, water supplies" falls within the legislative jurisdiction of the State Governments vide item 17 of the List II-State List under Seventh Schedule referred to in the Article 246(3) of the Constitution and States are vested with the constitutional right to plan, implement, operate and maintain water supply projects
Though water supply and sanitation is a State subject, the policies, strategies and guidelines are being provided by CPHEEO to the States & UTs Governments including Municipal Corporations / Committees. The CPHEEO plays a vital role in processing the schemes posed for external funding agencies including World Bank / JBIC/ ADB/ and Bilateral and Multilateral funding agencies and institutional financing such as LIC. It acts as an Advisory body at Central level to advise the concerned State agencies and Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) in implementation, operation & maintenance of urban water supply, sanitation and Solid Waste Management projects and helps to adopt latest technologies in these sub sectors.
Besides, the CPHEEO also implements centrally sponsored Accelerated Urban Water Supply Programme (AUWSP) for small towns (scrutinizing / approving the schemes received from State Departments from techno-economic angle), Solid Waste Management in 10 airfield towns, sponsors research studies, organizes training courses for the in-service engineers working in the water supply and sanitation sector.
PHE training was launched in 1956 as a Plan Programme to provide training to in-service Public Health Engineers so as to keep them abreast with the latest know-how in the field of Public Health / Environmental Engineering. At present, it sponsors Post Graduate Courses in Public Health Engineering / Environmental Engineering through 12 recognized academic institutions and over 60 Short Term & Refresher Courses through 21 academic institutions and training institutes under field departmensts.