New Delhi [India], July 16 (ANI): Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, as many as 45 lakh tap connections have been provided so far in the year 2020-21 since Unlock-1, the Ministry of Jal Shakti stated on Thursday.
"Jal Jeevan Mission was launched in August 2019 and in 7 months of 2019-20, around 84.83 lakh rural households were provided with tap connections. About 1 lakh households are being provided daily with tap connections. For ensuring transparency, every asset created is being geo-tagged and connections are being linked with the 'Aadhar' of the 'head of the household'," the Ministry said in a release.
A dashboard indicating the progress of the mission, up to the district level, has been created and is available at the ministry's website.
"After the mission came into being, states were requested to undertake a revalidation exercise of baseline data, as per which there are 19.04 crore rural households in the country, out of which 3.23 crore households are already provided tap connections. Remaining 15.81 crore households are to be provided with tap connections," the Jal Shakti Ministry stated.
"Thus, the objective is to cover approximately 16 crore households in a time-bound manner while ensuring the functionality of already provided connections. This means 3.2 crore households to be covered every year i.e. approximately 88,000 tap connections to be provided on a daily basis. With this goal in mind, states/ UTs are working hard to provide a tap connection to every rural household. In this endeavor, states like Bihar, Telangana, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh lead with excellent performance," it added.
The ministry further stated that in 2020-21, a sum of Rs 23,500 crore has been allocated for the implementation of JJM. At present, more than Rs 8,000 crore of Central fund is available with the States/UTs for the implementation of the Mission.
Besides this, in 2020-21, 50 per cent of 15th Finance Commission grants to Rural Local Bodies, i.e. Rs 30,375 Crore has also been earmarked for water supply and sanitation. 50 per cent of this amount has been released to States on July 15, 2020. This will help in better planning, implementation, management, operation and maintenance of drinking water supply systems in villages so as people continue to get potable water on a regular and long-term basis, the ministry added.
Various States/ UTs have committed to achieving the goal of the Mission well before 2024. In 2021, Bihar, Goa, Puducherry and Telangana have planned for complete saturation; similarly in 2022, States/UTs of Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Ladakh, Meghalaya, Punjab, Sikkim and Uttar Pradesh. While Arunachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura, Chhattisgarh have planned for 100 per cent coverage in 2023. States like Assam, Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand, Kerala, Maharashtra, Odisha, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Uttarakhand and West Bengal have planned for 2024.
"The objective of the Mission is universal coverage and emphasis is on the principle of 'equity and inclusiveness' i.e. every family in the village gets tap water connection in their household and 'none is left behind'. Accordingly, States are giving priority to SC/ ST majority populated villages, aspirational districts, villages in drought-prone and desert areas and quality-affected habitations," the ministry said.
"In line with the clarion call of the Prime Minister to ensure 'ease of living' in rural areas by providing facilities like financial inclusion, houses, road, clean fuel, electricity, toilets, the Jal Jeevan Mission is providing drinking water in every rural household, which will go a long way in improving the lives of the rural population. The Mission will also reduce the drudgery of women and girls on whom the primary responsibility of fetching water is vested with," the ministry added. (ANI)