Jal Shakti Abhiyan – Har Ghar Jal Scheme (National Water Conservation Scheme 2019-20)

Scarcity of water was not a new issue in the urban areas. But the problem is no longer confined to the cities. It has reached the rural areas as well. The environmentalists had raised their concern about this in the past as well. But the government was unable to take any concrete measures to curb the issue. Millions of people in India are suffering from low water supply. They have to depend on the water tankers, which are commissioned by the state governments, to distribute water in the badly hit areas. As the similar situation has been reported in multiple states, the central government has finally realized the gravity of the matter, and has come up with a project that may offer a way out. The name of this scheme is Jal Shakti Abhiyan, and the authority wants the participation of people, from all walks of the society. In this article, you will get detailed information about the features of this scheme.

Jal Shakti Abhiyan

Launch details

Name of the schemeJal Shakti Abhiyan (Har Ghar Jal Scheme)
Launched inIndia
Launched byNarendra Modi
Announced byGajendra Singh Shekhawat
Aim of the schemeWater conservation
Date of announcementJuly 2019
Implementation date2019 – 2020


Key features of the Har Ghar Jal Scheme (Tap Water to every Household)

  1. Elimination of water scarcity issues – India is one of the nations, which has a teeming population and intense industrialization activities. These negatively impact the natural water sources. Till date, people have been using groundwater in high amounts. No appropriate measures were taken to ensure water replenishment in the sub-surface areas. Environmentalists and scientists are of the opinion that the ground water reserves are almost famished, and will not last long if the nothing is done to stop this indiscriminate wastage of water. This project encompasses several sections, which will be able to arrest water level depletion, and but us time for better implementation of water conservation methods.
  2. Initiatives to be taken – The central government will pave the path for better water conservation. Apart from this, it will develop the system of rainwater harvesting all over the nation. Restoration of big and small water bodies has also found a place on the initiative list. Additionally, rigorous planting of trees (afforestation) and watershed system will also ensure the increase of the water level.
  3. Implementation in phases – The central authority has suggested that this scheme will be implemented in two separate phases. The first implementation phase will commence on 1st July 2019 and will continue till 15th of September 2019. The second implementation phase will start on the 1st of October and will end on the 30th of November, 2019.
  4. Number of distressed areas – The central government has already published a report that sates the sorry state in the country. The report highlights that 21 cities will no longer have any ground water left by the end of 2020. The report also highlights that 255 districts fall in the high-risk zone, and are already facing low water supply.
  5. Resurrection of water bodies – The state government are rather inept when it comes to the maintenance of natural sources of water like the lakes, ponds, wells and rivers. Though environmentalists have reached out with to the government, with reports, which highlight the importance of these water bodies, the suggestions have fallen on deaf years. If maintained properly, these will curb the scarcity of water. These water bodies can be used for meeting the water requirements in urban and rural areas.
  6. Using waste water – Recycling waste water that has not been contaminated, is another key feature of the scheme. It has been targeted towards the urban areas. For this, the central and the state authorities must work in unison to construct more water recycling plants. The treated water will be rendered harmless, and then it will be delivered to the homes via a network of pipelines.
  7. Educating the farmers – The scheme also need to take the farmers in consideration. This section must be educated appropriately so that they can make use of modern irrigation techniques, without wasting water. Instead of depending completely on the ground water resources, they will be instructed to make use of rainwater harvesting methods.
  8. Rationing industries – The rampant establishment and expansion of industries also use up a larger quantities of water on a regular basis. It does not give enough time to the sub-surface water to accumulate. The central government will also ration the amount of water that the industrial belts will receive from in the near future.
  9. Departments supervising the scheme – The minister also highlighted that three central government ministries will have to pool in their resources to implement the Jal Shakti Abhiyan. The Ministry of Water Resources will be closely aided by the Ministry of Environment to determine the seriousness of the case. Accordingly, they will implement the measures. Here, they will require the assistance of the Ministry of Agriculture.
  10. Institutes associated with the scheme – The central and the state governments will require assistance from all sections of the society for the success of this movement. Creating awareness, among rural as well as urban people is a must. Proper data and information will assist the people to understand the seriousness of the matter. When they realize that their existence is at stake, then they will take necessary steps to avert the issues. For this, the schools and college students will be roped in. Several environmental centers and NGOs will also do their part in the dissemination of information. The engineers from the top IITs will be roped in so that they can use their expertise in the development of water conservation techniques. Lastly, National Cadet Corps, Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan and other such institutes will be roped in to spread a word and monitor the progress of this project.
  11. Tenure of the scheme – The minister of the respective department also declared that there is very less time on their hands to implement the scheme successfully, and make it successful. The Jal Shakti Abhiyan has been targeted to be completed within five years. It is the only way to protect the ground water reserves.

The future of the entire nation and the people depends on the successful implementation of this project. Though the central government is gearing up for the operation, many sections think that it is already too late to reserve the situation. Another issue is getting the industrialists to sign the contract. It is easy to assume that this section is only concerned about the profit they make. Rationing water is like limiting their profits. The industrialists will try and put pressure on the central government. But the central authority must not budge under such pressure as the wellbeing of the entire country depends on the success of this scheme. It is impossible to save the population without adequate safer drinking water.

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