Goa is first "Har Ghar Jal" certified state, Dadra & Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu first UTs to achieve feat
New Delhi, August 19, 2022
Goa has become the first "Har Ghar Jal" certified state along with Dadra & Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu being the first Union Territories (UTs) to achieve the feat, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said today.
In a video message to the Har Ghar Jal Utsav event under the Jal Jeevan Mission at Panaji, Goa, the Prime Minister said, “Today, 10 crore rural households of the country have been connected to piped clean water facility. This is a big success of the government's campaign to deliver water to every household.”
He congratulated Goa for becoming the first Har Ghar Jal certified state with every household having piped water supply connection. He also acknowledged Dadra Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu as the first UTs to achieve the feat. He lauded the people, government and local self-government institutions for their efforts. Several other states were going to join the list soon, he added.
The third achievement in recent years was that one lakh villages in different states of the country have turned ODF plus. After the country was declared Open Defecation Free (ODF) a few years ago, the next resolution was to achieve ODF plus status for villages, that is, they should have community toilets, plastic waste management, grey water management and Gobardhan (safe management of cattle waste, agriculture waste and organic waste in rural areas projects).
Underlining the water security challenges that the world was facing, Modi said water scarcity could become a huge obstacle in accomplishing the resolution of Developed India - Viksit Bharat. “Our government has been working relentlessly for the last 8 years for water security,” he said.
“It is true that to form a government, one does not have to work that hard as one has to work to build a country. We have all chosen to work for nation-building. That is why we are working on the challenges of the present and the future. Those who do not care about the country, are not bothered about spoiling the present or future of the country. Such people can talk big, but can never work with a big vision for water,” he added.
Talking about the multi-pronged approach of the government to ensure water security, the Prime Minister listed initiatives like Catch the Rain, Atal Bhujal Scheme, 75 Amrit Sarovar in every district, river-linking and Jal Jeevan Mission. The number of Ramsar wetland sites in India has gone up to 75, out of which 50 were added in the last eight years.
“There cannot be a better beginning of Amrit Kaal”, he said, lauding the feat of connecting seven crore rural households with piped water in just three years whereas in seven decades since Independence only 3 crore households had this facility.
“There were about 16 crore rural households in the country, who had to depend on outside sources for water. We could not have left such a large population of the villages fighting for this basic need. That is why three years ago, I had announced from the Red Fort that every house would get piped water. About Rs 3.60 lakh crores were being spent on this campaign. Despite the interruptions caused by the biggest epidemic of 100 years, the pace of this campaign did not slow down. The result of this continuous effort is that in just seven years, the country has done more than double the work done in seven decades. This is an example of the same human-centred development, which I talked about this time from the Red Fort,” he added.
As the main sufferer of the problems related to water, women were at the centre of the government’s efforts. It was improving the ease of living for women and giving them a key role in water governance. “Jal Jeevan Abhiyan is not just a government scheme, but it is a scheme run by the community, for the community,” he said.
"The four pillars of the success of the Jal Jeevan Mission were people’s participation, stakeholder participation, political will and optimum utilisation of resources. Local people and Gram Sabhas and other institutions of local governance have been given an unprecedented role in the campaign. Local women are trained for water testing and are members of ‘Paani Samitis’. Stakeholder participation was evident in the enthusiasm shown by panchayats, NGOs, educational institutions and all the ministries," he said.
Similarly, achieving much more in just seven years than what was achieved in the last seven decades indicates political will. Optimum utilisation of resources was reflected in synergizing with schemes like MGNREGA. Saturation of piped water will also eliminate the possibility of any discrimination, he added.
Referring to the use of technology like geo-tagging of water assets and Internet of things solutions for water supply and quality control, he pointed out that people’s power, women's power and the power of technology were powering the Jal Jeevan Mission.