New Delhi: While releasing the ‘Margdarshika’ for Gram Panchayats and Paani Samitis for implementation of Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM) to have assured water supply to every rural home and unveiling of JJM Logo on 29th September, 2020, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi spoke about launching of ‘100 days campaign’ on 2nd October, 2020 to ensure piped safe water in schools and anganwadi centres across the country. He also appealed to the States to make best use of this campaign to ensure provision of potable piped water supply in these public institutions. Ensuring safe water to children is a priority, as they are the most vulnerable to water-borne diseases, therefore provisions have been made under Jal Jeevan Mission for ensuring safe water through tap water connection in schools, anganwadi centres, health care centres, etc.
National Jal Jeevan Mission has reached out to States/ UTs to launch this campaign on 2nd October, 2020. During this 100 days campaign, Gram Sabhas will be convened coinciding with Gandhi Jayanti, on 2nd October, 2020 and in coming days to pass a resolution for providing safe water in all schools, anganwadi centres and other public institutions in the village in the next 100 days. These facilities will be operated and maintained by the Gram Panchayat and/ or its sub-committee i.e. Village Water & Sanitation Committee or Paani Samiti.
As ‘nodal department’, Public Health Engineering Department of States will spearhead the campaign by involving Gram Panchayats and/ or its sub-committees, along with other line departments namely Education, Women & Child Welfare, Panchayati Raj & Rural Development, Tribal Welfare, etc. This campaign will go a long-way in ensuring safe water supply to our children that will positively impact their health and overall development. This will be a befitting tribute to the ‘Father of the Nation’ Mahatma Gandhi on his 151st birth anniversary.
On the occasion of Gandhi Jayanti, Government of Gujarat is organizing an event at Porbander, where Chief Minister Shri Vijay Rupani will declare four districts of the State viz. Gandhinagar, Mehsana, Porbandar, and Anand having 100 percent household tap water connections coverage. The event will also be joined virtually by Minister of Jal Shakti, Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat through video conference from Delhi. In this event, 100 days campaign to provide assured piped water supply in anganwadi centres and schools will be launched.
In Gujarat, the tap water coverage in rural households is 79.85 percent as on date. In 2020-21, the State has provided tap water connections to 7.70 lakh households. In the past one year, more than 2.30 Crore households have already been provided tap water connections across the country. As of now, almost 30% of total rural households i.e. 5.50 Crore rural households now get assured safe tap water in their homes.
Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM) aims at the universal coverage of provision of tap water connection to every rural home by 2024. Under the mission, special focus is on women and children. Ensuring safe water to children is a priority, as they are the most vulnerable to water-borne diseases like diarrhoea, dysentery, cholera, typhoid, etc. Repeated infections due to consumption of unsafe water in their formative years may have adverse effects, resulting in stunting. The situation is much more complex in areas where water sources are found to be contaminated with Arsenic, Fluoride, heavy metals, etc. and prolonged consumption of water having these contaminants may lead to degenerating diseases like Arsenicosis, Fluorosis, etc. resulting in serious health problems. To tackle this serious issue, provisions have been made under Jal Jeevan Mission for ensuring safe water through tap water connection in schools, anganwadi centres, health care centres, etc.