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Let’s remember that there is no other alternative to water!

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By: Dr.Satyawan ‘Saurabh’

The world is witnessing worst kind of climate changes and according to the United Nations panel of scientists, “Humanity still has a chance, close to the last one, to prevent the worst of climate change from future harms.

But doing so requires quickly slashing carbon pollution and fossil fuel use by nearly two-thirds by 2035, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change added as the United Nations chief said it more bluntly, calling for an end to new fossil fuel exploration and rich countries quitting coal, oil and gas by 2040.

As the population and economy grow, so does the water demand. With limited water and competing needs, drinking water management has become challenging. Other difficulties, such as depletion of groundwater and erratic rainfall. These difficulties have put a strain on the rural population, who meet their water needs with traditional knowledge and water wisdom. When it comes to health, people in rural areas need piped water. To maintain the relationship between water and energy, special attention should be paid to increasing water conservation and saving natural water sources as it is also very important for future energy production.

Most of us wonder what a single person can do to save water. With this type of thinking, we waste water every day. In today’s world, everyone is in a race to have big bathrooms in their homes, but we forget that they are useless without water. We keep using more water than we need. At least each of us can make proper use of water in our homes and workplaces. Many times it is seen that water is flowing from the taps on the roadside and going to waste, but we pass by and do not bother to close the tap. We should think about these topics and try to save water as far as possible in our daily life.

If we talk about India, it rains in abundance here, but due to the increase in population, water scarcity is being felt in the country. Due to the increase in population, there is more use of natural resources. Water sources, local ponds, pools, rivers, and reservoirs are getting polluted and their water is decreasing. At present, clean drinking water is not available to the growing population of the country. Apart from this, agriculture in India is also dependent on rain. The success of agriculture in India depends on the availability of water, in which rainwater plays an important role. A good rain means a good crop. There is a great need to save rainwater and it should be ensured that no acidic elements are mixed in it as this will pollute the water and its sources.

That’s why Jal Jeevan Mission is the foundation of the National Jal Jeevan Kosh. On 15th August 2019 Honorable Prime Minister of India made a big announcement regarding a government program. The main objective of the Jal Jeevan Mission is to supply 55 liters of water per person per day to every rural household through functional household tap connections by 2024. Rainwater harvesting and water conservation are also the most important aspects of the mission. The focus is on using recycled water and recharging structures, developing waterways, and planting trees. Traditional and other water bodies are being renovated.

This mission will remove the shortage of tap water connections by harnessing the tap connections. This is based on local management of how much water is used and how much is available. The mission will create local infrastructure for things like harvesting water, injecting water directly into the ground, and managing domestic wastewater so it can be reused. By 2024, every person in a rural household will be able to get 55 liters of water per day from a tap connection. The mission helps the community come up with a plan for the water that includes lots of information, education, and communication. An amount of Rs 3 lakh crore was given in this scheme. Everyone in this mission helps to give top priority to the mass movement for water. For the Himalayan and North Eastern States, the fund is divided 90:10 between the Center and the State, 50:50 for the rest of the States, and 100% for the Union Territories.

Under the Jal Jeevan Mission, tap water is provided to every rural household even in SC/ST-dominated villages in Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra, so that “no one is left out.” Also, tap water is given top priority in places where water quality is poor, such as desert and drought-prone areas, SC/ST majority villages, Sansad Adarsh Gramin Yojana villages, etc. The water supply system of the village is also in good condition in the scheme of water committees, which systematically operate the system. At least half of these associations have 10 to 15 members, at least half of whom are women. Other members come from self-help groups, recognized social and health workers, anganwadi teachers, and other places. The committees prepare one-time action plans for the village utilizing all its resources.

There are some problems in the implementation of the National Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Mission, the main one being the lack of reliable drinking water sources. In areas such as water-stressed, drought-prone, and subtropical, groundwater, uneven terrain, and scattered rural settlements have the presence of location-specific contaminants, as well as the involvement of local village communities in managing and operating the village water supply infrastructure. Disability comes in the way. In some states, especially after the Covid-19 pandemic, the delay in issuing matching state shares is also coming in the way of the success of this mission. If we look at the progress made so far in Jal Jeevan Mission, at the time Jal Jeevan Mission was announced, 17.1% of the 18.93 crore rural households had tap water connections. This means that 3.23 crore rural households had tap water connections.

So far, 5.38 crore (28%) rural households have been provided with tap water connections under JJM. Therefore, out of 19.22 billion rural households in the country, 8.62 billion (or 44.84 percent) have potable tap water. States like Goa, Telangana, Andaman, Nicobar Islands, and Puducherry have reached 100% of households in rural areas with running water from taps. “Har Ghar Jal” has become everyone’s topmost priority. The primary objective of the mission is to save water while wasting as little as possible. At this time, to save life on the planet earth, the biggest need is to save water; This will be done by managing water resources to ensure that everyone in the country gets the same amount of water.

The writer is Research scholar, poet, freelance journalist and columnist, All India Radio and TV panellist.

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