Union Minister of Jal Shakti & Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh jointly review Jal Jeevan Mission implementation in the State

New Delhi : Union Minister, Jal Shakti, Gajendra Singh Shekhawat and Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh, Shri Bhupesh Baghel jointly reviewed implementation of Jal Jeevan Mission in the State at Chief Minister House in Raipur today. The Chief Minister assured the visiting Union minister that the State will take all necessary steps to accelerate the pace of implementation of Jal Jeevan Mission and provide tap water supply to remaining 39.59 lakh households in Chhattisgarh by September 2023. Union Minister Jal Shakti, Shri Shekhawat assured the Chief Minister of all support to State to achieve ‘Har Ghar Jal’ target. It is with the aim to translate Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s vision of providing clean tap water to every household in the country by 2024.

The Chief Minister assured that the State will undertake intensive monthly review to provide assured tap water supply to every rural household in adequate quantity of prescribed quality on regular and long-term basis. Shri  Ravindra Chaube, Minister of Water Resources, Parliamentary Affairs, Law and Legal Affairs, Agriculture & Biotechnology, and Animal Husbandry & Fisheries, Shri Guru Rudra Kumar, Minister of Public Health & Engineering and Village Industries, Shri Amitabh Jain, Chief Secretary, Chhatisgarh, Shri Bharat Lal, Additional Secretary, GoI and Mission Director, National Jal Jeevan Mission, and other senior officers from Ministry of Jal Shakti and Chhatisgarh were present during the review.

During the meeting, Additional Secretary and Mission Director, National Jal Jeevan Mission, Shri Bharat Lal made a presentation highlighting the planning and implementation of JJM in the State. Later, he also had a detailed review meeting with the principal secretary and other senior State officials on speedy implementation of the mission in Chhattisgarh.

At the time of launch of Jal Jeevan Mission, out of a total of 45.48 lakh households in Chhatisgarh, only 3.20 lakh (7%) households had tap water connections. In 23 months, despite Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown disruptions, 2.69 lakh households have been provided with tap water connections. As a result, now, 5.89 lakh households (13%) in villages of Chhattisgarh have tap water supply.

To become ‘Har Ghar Jal’, the State has planned to provide tap water connections to 22.14 lakh households in 2021-22, 11.37 lakh tap water connections in 2022-23 and remaining 6.29 lakh tap water connections in 2023-24.

Keeping in view of the State’s firm resolve to ensure potable tap water supply to every home, Union Minister, Jal Shakti, Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat has increased the Central grant to Chhattisgarh in 2021-22 to Rs. 1,908.96 Crore, which was four times to Rs. 445.52 Crore allocated in 2020-21. National Jal Jeevan Mission, Ministry of Jal Shakti has also released Rs. 453.71 Crores to the State as first tranche. This year with four-fold increase in Central allocation (Rs 1,908.96 crore), unspent balance of Rs 168.52 Crore & short fall of Rs. 113.04 Crore in State matching share in 2020-21, and matching State’s share in current year, the State has an assured availability of Rs. 4,268 Crore for providing tap water supply in 2021-22. Thus there is no paucity of fund.

In 2021-22, Rs. 646 Crore has been allocated to Chhattisgarh as 15th FC tied grant for water & sanitation to Rural Local Bodies/ PRIs. There is an assured funding of Rs 3,402 Crore for the next five years i.e. up to 2025-26. This huge investment in rural areas of Chhattisgarh, will create new employment opportunities, accelerate economic activities and boost rural economy. It will create income generating opportunities in villages.

The implementation of the mission to raise demand for masons, electricians, plumbers, motor mechanics, pump operators, etc. in large numbers for creation as well as management, operation and maintenance of water supply schemes to ensure potable water supply on regular and long-term basis. Further, there will be demand for various kinds of materials like cement, bricks, pipes, valves, water/ energy efficient pumps, faucets, etc. thereby increasing demand for locally available workers as well as domestic manufacturing industries, which in turn will help in realizing the goal of ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’.

To ensure safe drinking water for children in schools and anganwadi centres, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi announced a 100-days campaign, which was launched on 2nd October, 2020 by the Union Minister, Jal Shakti, Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat. In Chhattisgarh only 17,967 schools (39%) and 10,019 anganwadi centres (21%) have access to piped water supply. Union Minister, Jal Shakti, Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat today urged the State to ensure that in few months, provision of safe tap water is made in all remaining schools, ashramshalas and anganwadi centres for better health, improved sanitation and hygiene for children.

Under Jal Jeevan Mission, the State also needs to accord priority to water-scarce areas, quality-affected villages, Aspirational districts, SC/ ST majority villages and Saansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (SAGY) villages.

Water quality monitoring & surveillance activities are to be given top priority, for which anganwadi workers, ASHA workers, members of Self-Help Groups, PRI members, school teachers etc.; are being trained so that they can test water samples for contamination by using Field test Kits (FTKs). In Chhattisgarh, Out of total 68 labs only 9 labs are NABL accredited. State needs to upgrade the water testing laboratories and secure their NABL accreditation.

JFollowing the principle of Prime Minister’s vision of ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas’, the motto of the Mission is that ‘no one is left out’ and every household in a village should be provided with tap water connection. Jal Jeevan Mission is a ‘bottom up’ approach where community plays a vital role starting from planning to implementation, management, operation and maintenance. To achieve this, State Government has to undertake support activities like strengthening the Village Water & Sanitation Committee (VWSC)/ Pani Samiti, developing of Village Action Plan for the next five years, engaging Implementing State Agencies (ISAs) to handhold and support village communities, carry out awareness among people.

So far, total 19,632 Pani Samiti/ VWSCs constituted and 19,668 Village Action Plan prepared out of 19,698 villages in the State. As on date, there is no Implementing Support Agencies engaged by the State. Considering the large number of villages in Chhattisgarh, the State needs to engage Implementation Support Agencies (ISAs). Such handholding and capacity building plays a critical role in ensuring long-term sustainability and operation & maintenance of the water supply infrastructure for assured water supply to every home.

On 15 August, 2019, at the time of launch of Jal Jeevan Mission, out of 18.98 Crore rural households in country, only 3.23 Crore (17%) had tap water connections. Despite Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown disruptions, Jal Jeevan Mission provided 4.67 Crore tap water connections in last 23 months. As a result, today, 7.90 Crore (41.35%) households have tap water supply. Goa, Telangana, Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Dadra & Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu, and Puducherry have achieved 100% household connection in rural areas and has become ‘Har Ghar Jal’. At present, 78 districts, 910 blocks, over 54 thousand Gram Panchayats and more than 1.06 lakh villages have achieved the target of ‘Har Ghar Jal’.

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