Bhopal : About 98 percent drinking water system of rural areas of the state is based on ground water sources. In view of the continuous decline in ground water level for the last several years, the state government has given priority to group water supply schemes based on surface water sources in the last one year for a permanent solution to the rural drinking water problem., “Har Ghar Nal se Jal” scheme has been implemented in the rural areas of the state. Now people in rural areas do not have to fetch water from rivers, ponds, wells and bavdis.
Priority has been given to small and remote villages in the new drinking water policy. The policy has been simplified for the implementation of tap-water schemes in these villages. New hand pumps will be installed in the habitats where drinking water is not available at the rate of 55 litres per person per day during the summer season. The new drinking water policy has a provision for at least one government drinking water source within a radius of 300 meters earlier drinking water source was provided within 500 meters of any settlement, Priority is being given to scheduled caste and scheduled tribe dominated villages for installation of hand pumps. Now, even small villages along with big villages facing drinking water crisis will be able to benefit from the implementation of the tap-water scheme in summer season.
Madhya Pradesh is the first state to enact the “Right to Water” Act
The state government has prepared a draft of the “Right-to-Water” Act under the guidance of experts. This act will be passed and implemented in the upcoming budget session of the Legislative Assembly. With the implementation of this Act, Madhya Pradesh will become the first state in the country, where people will get the legal right to water. A provision of Rs one thousand crores has been made in the budget to implement this Act. This act is not a government law but “a public law”. Water conservation and promotion works will be implemented as a big campaign by ensuring public participation. By this law, all the water sources, rivers, ponds and traditional water sources of the state will be protected and stabilized. The legal right to water is the result of the determination of the state government to provide water to every family according to its requirement.
Tap water to reach every house
A detailed work-plan of Rs. 68 thousand crore has been chalked out to supply water from tap to every house in rural areas. So far, water supply has been started through domestic tap connections to more than 11.5 crore population of 802 villages by completing 19 group water schemes. Work on 39 schemes costing Rs 6672 crore is in progress, which will be completed in the next two years. This will provide drinking water to about 64 lakh population of 6091 villages. To provide drinking water to one crore population of 14 thousand 510 villages of the state, DPR of 45 group water supply schemes of Rs 22 thousand 484 crore has been prepared.
Permanent arrangement of providing drinking water to villagers
In the last one year, intensive efforts have been taken to ensure adequate drinking water arrangements in rural areas. In such a short time, more than 6 thousand hand pumps have been installed in rural areas, drinking water supply has been started by completing more than 600 new tap-water schemes and more than 6700 single-phase motor pumps have been installed. About three thousand tap-water schemes of the erstwhile government have also been revived. As many as 3 lakh 12 thousand hand pumps lying closed in rural areas were repaired. In addition, 65 thousand hand pumps were repaired by increasing or replacing three and a half lakh meter riser pipes.
Contract with IIT for better planning
A contract has been signed with IIT Delhi for better planning of drinking water supply schemes. Financial assistance for schemes worth Rs 4500 crore has been received from New Development Bank for availability of drinking water. The process of getting financial support for group drinking water scheme in all the villages from JICA to Neemuch and Mandsaur district and 1735 villages of Alot development block in Ratlam district is in the final stage.
Manifesto- an effective initiative
As per the promises made in the manifesto, the process of regulating supply of pure drinking water in rural and tribal areas and strengthening their permanent system of maintenance has been started. Active mechanism for grievance redressal is also being implemented. Jal Nigam is being strengthened. Group water supply projects costing about Rs 27 thousand crore are under process. For their implementation, financial arrangements have been initiated from JICA, ADB, NDB Securitized Mining Fund and PPC. To monitor the quality of construction of new water schemes and to complete them within the time limit, regular monitoring is being done at the top level. Drinking water schemes are being prepared on the basis of feasibility for the areas identified by the Jal Nigam and the department for settlements within 50 km radius of Narmada and other perennial rivers.. The contractor system in the department is being made transparent.
First rank in water quality
Madhya Pradesh has got the first ranking among the 14 criteria set for water quality testing in laboratories by the Ministry of Water Power, Government of India. The state has been ranked first under IS 10500-2012. Laboratories of Morena, Guna, Gwalior, Bhind, Shajapur, Mandsaur, Panna, Mandla and Sagar besides the headquarters have secured position among the top ten in the state.
Decisions taken for contract employees’ welfare
Accounts are being opened in the National Pension Scheme (N.P.S.) to secure the future of more than 500 contract employees and their families working under the Jal Sahayata Sangathan in the state since 2013. In this, 10 percent will be contributed by the contract employees and 10 percent by the department.
The process of making online software to monitor the contracts of departmental works through Map IT is in operation. A portal is being prepared to monitor the operation of the established tap-water schemes and to ensure participation in the operations of the respective gram panchayats. Smart meters are being installed for real-time monitoring of electricity consumption in tap-water schemes. The e-tendering system in Jal Nigam has been strengthened by making it transparent. The efforts to ensure continuous drinking water supply in one lakh 28 thousand 231 rural settlements of the state have started bearing fruit.