Demand for potable water
As Kashmir valley witnessed a scanty rainfall this summer hundreds of villages spread across Kashmir region complained of not getting enough potable water.
Even when winter season is approaching fast, people in many areas are still complaining of water shortage and the administration’s failure to provide people with adequate supply of drinking water.
Just yesterday several villages in south Kashmir Shopian district and parts of Central Kashmir’s Ganderbal district complained about the government’s failure yet again. Even several villages in Pulwama complained about water shortage and the admin’s failure to resolve the crisis.
The situation is no different in various parts of Srinagar where people have been complaining of water crisis this summer season and the crisis is getting worse as winter approaches.
Jammu and Kashmir has abundant water resources. And most of it is pure in form as the origin of this water is glaciers and snow. However, most of the far off are not getting potable drinking water, making the lives of commoners miserable.
Despite the past governments promising potable water to all the households the claims remained confined to papers only. Even in remote Kandi and hilly areas of Kashmir region people have to walk several kilometers daily to get potable water for their daily use.
However, the administration has now accorded sanction to the implementation of Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM) and roadmap to achieve 100 percent coverage of piped water supply by December 2021 across Jammu & Kashmir aligning it to the National Mission of Jal Jeevan.
The objective of the mission is to provide Functional Household Tap Connections (FHTC) to every rural household with priority to desert/drought prone and border areas, schools, anganwadi and health centres etc. Under the mission, sustainability of water supply system shall be ensured besides empowerment and development of human resource in the sector so as to meet the demands of construction, plumbing, water quality management and other purposes.
Under the National Jal Jeevan Mission, every rural household of the country will be connected with piped water supply by 2024. At present, 30.5% of J&K’s rural households have piped water connections compared to the national average of 18%. The FHTC mission provides for arranging tap connections to the remaining 11.12 lakh rural households out of 16.02 lakh in J&K as per Integrated Management of Information System (IMIS) data of JJM.
To achieve 100 percent coverage under JJM in a phased manner by December 2021, the PHE Department has carried out a detailed exercise to prepare District Water Security Plan through the District Water and Sanitation Mission headed by the concerned Deputy Commissioners.
However, what needs to be taken seriously is that these are mere government claims which need to be put into action. Time is already running short and the timeline that has been fixed to complete the mission needs to be adhered to at all costs. Otherwise the announcements will once again fail to provide any relief to the common man who is already suffering on this count.