New Delhi: In the Union Territory of Jammu & Kashmir (J&K), every household in Ganderbal and Srinagar districts has got tap water connections and every family is getting potable piped water in their homes, stated the Ministry of Jal Shakti (Water Resources) in a press communication on Thursday, 17th December, adding that the UT is planning 100% coverage by 2022 to accomplish the ambitious target of providing tap water connection to every rural household of J&K. Out of 18.17 lakh rural households in the UT of Jammu & Kashmir, 8.66 lakh (48%) are provided with tap water connections, the Water Resources Ministry claimed, adding that Jammu & Kashmir plans to provide tap connections in 2.32 lakh households during 2020-21.
The Union Government’s flagship programme, Jal Jeevan Mission, being implemented in partnership with states, aims to provide tap water connections to every rural household of the country by 2024. The objective of the mission is to ensure every household in every village and habitation gets a functional tap connection and ‘none are left behind’. With the focus of the Union Government to provide basic amenities in remote areas, aspirational districts, border areas, etc., this mission strives for provision of the basic amenity of safe drinking water in every rural household, said the Water Ministry.
Since the soul of this decentralised and demand-driven programme is community participation, the focus is on the planning of the water supply schemes in the village to its operation and maintenance, the Ministry stated, adding that every village is taken up as a unit and a Village Action Plan (VAP) for five years is being prepared for each village by the participation of the local community with mandatory components viz. strengthening of local drinking water sources; in-village water supply infrastructure to provide tap water connections; grey-water treatment and reuse; and operation & maintenance of water supply systems so that every family gets assured supply of potable water on a regular and long-term basis. Village action plans for all 6,877 villages in the UT have been prepared.
The Jal Shakti Ministry declared that in all villages, IEC campaign along with community mobilisation are being taken up to make the Jal Jeevan Mission truly a people’s movement. Out of 98 water testing laboratories, the UT plans NABL accreditation of 20 labs during the current year. Field testing kits will be provided at the community level for testing of water quality for taking corrective measures.
In less than a year, actual implementation of the mission that started on 25th December 2019, despite Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown as well as restrictions, about 2.80 crore households in the country have been provided with tap water connections, the Ministry stated, adding that, with this, as of now 6.03 crore households (32%) of the country are receiving tap water supply. Every year, more than 3 crore households are to be given tap water connections, the Ministry stated.
So far, one State i.e. Goa, 18 districts including difficult areas of Srinagar and Ganderbal in Jammu & Kashmir, Lahaul & Spiti in Himachal Pradesh, more than 423 blocks, 33,000 gram panchayats, and 60 thousand villages have achieved 100% household coverage. This shows the commitment to all-inclusive development and no one is left out.
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