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Jal Jeevan Mission: Har Ghar Jal

  • IASbaba
  • August 16, 2021
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Discussion on Jal Jeevan Mission – Har Ghar Jal, 03 Aug

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GOVERNANCE/ ECONOMY

  • GS-2: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.
  • GS-3: Indian Economy & Challenges

Jal Jeevan Mission: Har Ghar Jal

  • The On 15th August, 2019, Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi had announced Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM) to provide safe piped drinking water to every rural household in the country by 2024. 
  • The total cost of this mission is estimated to be around Rs. 3.6 lakh crores; out of this the share of the center is around Rs. 2.08 lakh crores. 

The Jal Jeevan mission

  • The vision of the mission is to ensure that every rural household has drinking water supply in adequate quantity of prescribed quality on regular and long-term basis at affordable service delivery charges leading to improvement in living standards of rural communities.
  • The Jal Jeevan Mission will be based on a community approach to water and will include extensive Information, Education and communication as a key component of the mission.
  • The programme will also implement source sustainability measures as mandatory elements, such as recharge and reuse through grey water management, water conservation, rain water harvesting.

Achievements of the mission so far:

  • The Jal Jeevan Mission was introduced with the objective of improving the quality of life and wellbeing of the people. 
  • The country has made significant achievements under the Jal Jeevan Mission, despite the challenge of the Covid pandemic during the last almost sixteen months.
  • There are about 74 districts in the country where tap water has been provided to every household. Besides, in more than one lakh villages and about 55 thousand panchayats 100 percent target has been achieved under Jal Jeevan Mission.
  • It has been less than two years since the mission was introduced, but in this short time, more than 4 crore households have been provided with tap water connections. 
  • If we compare the current situation with 15th August 2019, there were roughly 19.12 crore households and out of that only 3.23 crores were getting tap water supply which is less than 17% of the total households. 
  • But, today around 7.87 crores of households out of approximately 41.2 crore households, are getting tap water. 
  • Not only the households but the schools, Anganwadis, and public toilets are also getting water and as of now more than 67 percent of schools have tap water connections, more than 60.9 percent of the anganwadis, and more than 68.8 percent primary health care centres (PHCs) and gram panchayats have tap water supply. 
  • The focus is also on the Japanese encephalitis affected areas, and quality affected habitations as well and the mission is doing great in these areas as well.

Functioning of the mission:

  • Jal Jeevan Mission adopts an end-to-end approach which implies that not only taking care of water resources is important but taking care of water conservation, augmentation of existing water resources, and then providing tap water supply is also very important.
  • If more tap water is provided to the household, then naturally the amount of greywater or used water will be more. So, Jal Jeevan Mission has made greywater treatment and its reuse in forestry, agriculture, horticulture, or in the local industries one of the essential components of the mission. 
  • Therefore, all three aspects are taken care of under the Jal Jeevan Mission.: 
    • The source of water and its sustainability, 
    • The operation maintenance and providing tap water supply to each and every household, and
    • The treatment of the greywater or used water, 
  • There is a Water Quality Management Information System as well which is a dedicated one-stop information portal that provides information about the quality of water. Jal Jeevan Mission emphasizes that each local village should be able to test the quality of water not only at the source but also at the delivery points. 
  • For that purpose, the National Jal Jeevan Mission with the help of states is giving training to at least five women in one village, implying out of the 6 lakh villages, 30 lakh women will be trained. So far, 6 lakh women have been trained and they are assigned the task of testing the tap water quality which they get at their village level.
  • Focus is now being given to getting the 2023 water quality labs in the country accredited by the National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL). All these labs are now open to the public at a very nominal cost. Now, the public can go there and test the tap water quality supplied to them.

Challenges involved:

  • Bigger states have bigger challenges. In water scheme though focus is village level scheme but many times support is not available very close to the villages. So, for that, there is provision of multi village scheme. Example is Rajasthan.
  • Also, in the Ganga belt, water quality issues are present in the form of impurity (arsenic, sulfur, etc.) contamination or other water quality issues and hence, providing water to households in these areas does take time.
  • But the states have taken this mission very seriously and they are doing their best to provide water to each household.

Way Forward:

  • Be it at the water conservation level, or greywater treatment, or the operation and maintenance level, all the level require the community involvement as the main focus of the Jal Jeevan Mission is the community. Therefore, without community involvement it is not possible to successfully achieve the target. 
  • Earlier, all the programs were basically engineering-based programs so, most of the stress was on creating engineering water infrastructure. 
  • But this time, the emphasis is on service delivery not on infrastructure creation. Service delivery has its own challenges such as supplying adequate water, maintaining the sources, etc. Hence, all these aspects should be taken care of.
  • The empowerment of capacity building of the local village communities is very important.
  • With the involvement of not only Ph.D. engineers but also the local people, the challenges will be met.

Can you answer this question now?

  • “The Jal Jeevan Mission will improve the quality of life and wellbeing of the people”. Critically discuss the achievement of Jal Jeevan mission.

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