New Delhi: National Jal Jeevan Mission has reached out to all States/ UTs for rolling out of sensor based IoT solution to measure and monitor water supply in rural areas. This is a noble initiative to ensure water service delivery in rural homes by addressing various issues that cause disruption in water supply on regular basis.
India has one of the most vibrant IoT eco-systems in the world, with various supporting enablers making it conducive for companies seeking to serve the global demand beyond national boundaries. Government of India has introduced a number of initiativesto leverage the benefits of these disruptive IoTtechnologies in multiple sectors.
To utilize this expertise, the National Jal Jeevan Mission (NJJM), Ministry of Jal Shakti has constituted a Technical Expert Committee to prepare a road map for measurement and monitoring of water service delivery system in the rural areas. The committee has eminent members from academia, administration, technology and specialists from water supply sector. The committee met 11 times and despite covid pandemic finalized the report. The report which has been shared to the States/ UTs provides a framework to design, develop and establish a coherent system that is able to exchange the data at local and central level. The broad framework will help the States/ UTs in firming up the desired standards to meet the requirement of change from mere infrastructure to ensuing water service delivery.
The mission in partnership with State Governments and sector partners has started facilitating sensor-based water supply system on pilot basis in several villages. The data from 11 pilot locations about the daily water supply it quantity and regularity are shown on Jal Jeevan Mission dashboard: https://ejalshakti.gov.in/jjmreport/JJMIndia.aspx. Many States like Bihar, Punjab, Haryana have come forward for the implementation. Sikkim, Manipur, Goa have completed basic survey works. Gujarat has begun navigating the sensor-based rural water supply systems in 1,000 villages. A technology grand challenge launched by NJJM in partnership with Meity, Government of India is going to be showcases in 100 villages in States of Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Manipur.
The data collected from the field locations will be transmitted to the State and Central server and can be used to monitor the functionality ( quantity, quality and regularity of water supply) at the State and Central level. This will ensure to minimise service delivery outage and water loss and monitor the quantity and quality on a long-term basis. The additional advantage of this data would be to analyse the demand pattern of the user groups over time and use this information for demand management at the aggregate level, minimise non-revenue water, ensure proper management and effective operation and maintenance of water supply systems in the villages.
In accordance with 73rdamendment to the Constitution, Gram Panchayat or its sub-committee i.e. Village water & Sanitation Committee/ Pani Samiti to play a key role in managing drinking water supply in rural areas. The 15thFinance Commission tied grants for PRIs/ RLBs are to be utilised for drinking water and sanitation. Thus, to facilitate States and Gram Panchayats or PaniSamiti, an automated system for measurement and monitoring of water supply is necessary. This requires the use of modern technology formeasurement and monitoring of the water service delivery and to capture and transmit service delivery data automatically for ensuring the quality of service.
It’s the endeavour of the Union Government to expand optic fibre network up toall villages. Accordingly, Prime Minister announced that all villages will be connected by fibre optic network. In almost whole country, telecom connectivity has reached. IoT strategies are increasingly used to monitor the water quantity and quality.Recent technological advancements such as IoT, Big Data Analytics, Cloud, etc. and declining costs of mobile data, hardware (sensors), and software provide an opportunity to digitise water supply infrastructure in rural India. Digitally enabled water supply infrastructure will help in near real-time monitoring and evidence-based policymaking. Digitisation of water supply infrastructure has the potential to help the Gram Panchayats as ‘local public utility’. More importantly, it will help anticipate and address future challenges.
Union Government’s flagship programme, Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM) focuses on water service delivery at the household level, i.e. supply of 55 lpcd of water of prescribed quality on a regular and long-term basis. Under the Mission Gram Panchayat or its sub-committee, i.e. Village Water & Sanitation Committee/ Pani Samiti are required to function as a ‘local public utility’ for drinking water management, water service delivery, grey water treatment & reuse, and take care of operation and maintenance of in-village water supply infrastructure for assured drinking water supplyto every rural household on regular and long-term basis.