Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM) or the Atul Bhujal Yojana is a project started by the Indian Government to get safe drinking water and sanitation to every house in India. It received widespread recognition and support and is one of the largest government schemes right now in India. News and updates regarding this project are almost always making headlines every other week and thus it is important to study this particular case for your UPSC preparations.
What is Jal Jeevan Mission?
Jal Jeevan is an initiative taken under the Jal Shakti Ministry also known as Department of Drinking Water and Sanitation (DDWS) to provide every house with piped water and help them with proper sanitation and drinking water. It was first hinted at on Independence Day in 2019 when Narendra Modi in his speech said that most houses in India do not have proper access to safe drinking water. That was an indication to the upcoming Jal Jeevan Mission. He put aside around 3.5 trillion rupees and said that it would be assigned to Jal Jeevan Mission for the Centre and the States to work on in the next few years.
What is Jal Jeevan Mission’s Goal?
The Mission’s goal is to give access to all households in India, be it in rural areas or urban areas, safe and adequate water through individual household tap connections and achieve it by the end of 2024. The Har Ghar Nal Se Jal programme was announced by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in her Budget 2019-20 speech. This programme is one of the most crucial parts of the Jal Jeevan Mission. It works towards implementing source sustainability measures as mandatory elements, such as recharge of and reuse through greywater management, water conservation, and rainwater harvesting. The Jal Jeevan Mission is based on a community approach to water. The mission includes information, education and communication which form the key components. The mission wants to create a people’s movement for water, making it everyone’s a priority, making everyone come together to work towards the same goal.
Jal Jeevan Mission Guidelines
The Jal Jeevan Mission in Kerala is said to have three phases of activities when it is being implemented and will be personally assisted by the Centre for the rural water supply initiative. Operational guidelines are to be released by the State. The guidelines are divided into three stages- planning, implementation and maintenance.
The First Stage
It will take a time period of up to three to six months and will be dedicated to planning, capacity building, selection of panchayats responsible, the formation of most basic panchayat-level water and sanitation committees, and signing all the agreements and official documentation needed for project implementation, according to a document released by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan during the formal launch of the JJM in Kerala on June 18.
The Second Stage
Ideally, the implementation stage which is the stage where the actual project comes into being and constitutes the second phase should range from six to 12 months. Wide-scale assessment of water sources and quality inspections, development of water sources when there is a lack of it and basic infrastructure, geo-tagging, tariff fixation, and commissioning of water supply schemes will be carried out in this phase.
The Third Stage
The third phase and the last stage is where the maintenance and operation of the water supplies, greywater management and training programmes will take place.
Implementation of Jal Jeevan Mission
For the implementation of JJM, the institutional arrangement has been proposed are:
- National Jal Jeevan Mission (NJJM) – Central level
- State Water and Sanitation Mission (SWSM) – State level
- District Water and Sanitation Mission (DWSM) – District level
- Village Water Sanitation Committee (VWSC) – Village level
Further, it was decided that every village will prepare a Village Action Plan (VAP) which will have three components:
- Water source & its maintenance
- Water supply
- Greywater (domestic wastewater) management.
Recent Endeavours for Jal Shakti Abhiyan
There has been a lot of actions being taken under the JJM project mission:
- Widespread 2020 recruitment for Jal Jeevan Mission in Assam, Bihar (called BRLPS in the State of Bihar) and Kerala.
- Jal Jeevan Mission Logo and Tagline Contest were held and around 5000 entries were submitted which are still under review. The winner’s logo and tagline will become the official face for the Mission under Ejalshakiti’s Har Ghar Jal Yojana.
India is well on its way to face one of the most serious water crisis. According to the NITI Aayog’s Composite Water Management Index (CWMI) 2018, 21 Indian cities are said to be in the danger of facing Day Zero in the coming years.
Jal Jeevan Hariyali Mission is not only about water provisions for all but also about recycling and reusing water. It is one of our hopes that could set things well in the future. Thus, it is the need of the hour to pay attention to and to follow this project stringently, not only to use our resources well and evenly divide it among every person but also to sustain it for future generations.