Thrust on rainwater harvesting

More than 15 lakh people in 240 grama panchayats in the State are expected to benefit from the rural water supply and sanitation schemes under the second phase of the World Bank-funded Jalanidhi project.

The respective beneficiary groups and the local grama panchayat would be joint owners of the schemes. A water security blueprint would be drawn up for all panchayats.

Compared to schemes in the first phase, the grama panchayats would bear an additional five per cent cost of each scheme, Kerala Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Agency (KRWSSA) Executive Director N. Prasanth told mediapersons here on Wednesday.

The World Bank had cleared a list of 30 panchayats where phase two would be rolled out first.

There would be a major thrust on rainwater harvesting and joint ventures with the Kerala Water Authority in setting up ‘multi-grama panchayat water supply schemes.' In such schemes, the KWA would deliver water in bulk and get paid. The distribution would be the responsibility of the beneficiary groups and of the respective grama panchayats.

Each project would take a minimum of 24 months to get completed.