Around 62% of rural households in India had fully functional tap water connections within their premises, according to a survey commissioned by the Union Ministry of Water Resources to assess the functioning of the government’s marquee Jal Jeevan Mission. Centre in June reported 52% rural households as having tap water connections
Tamil Nadu, Himachal Pradesh, Goa, and Puducherry reported more than 80% of households with fully functional connections, while less than half the households in Rajasthan, Kerala, Manipur, Tripura, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Mizoram and Sikkim had such connections.
A fully functional tap water connection is defined as a household getting at least 55 litres of per capita per day of potable water all through the year.
Close to three-fourths of households received water all seven days a week and 8% just once a week. On average, households got water for three hours every day, and 80% reported that their daily requirements of water were being met by the tap connections.
The water quality in some of the households was tested and revealed 95% of households to have within acceptable limits of pH values.
More than 90% of village-level institutions, such as schools and anganwadi centres, were getting potable water. More than half (57%) of the sampled households reported purifying water before drinking. Only around 3% of the households reported using reverse osmosis treatment for water purification prior to drinking.
However, the report mentions a concerning problem of chlorine contamination. Though 93% of the water samples were reportedly free of bacteriological contamination, “most of the anganwadi centres and schools, had higher than the permissible range of residual chlorine and indicated inappropriate local dosing. Thus, there is a need to monitor the correct dosing of chlorine in the pipe water supply system,” the report notes.
The assessment of the status of tap water connections was conducted by a private agency, HTA-Kantar Public, and relied on a sample survey that spanned 33 States and Union Territories, 712 districts, 13,299 villages, and 3,01,389 households.
The Jal Jeevan Mission aims to provide safe and adequate drinking water through individual household tap connections by 2024 to all households in rural India.
Goa, Telangana and Haryana have achieved 100% tap connectivity to all households. Union Territories like Puducherry, the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, and Daman and Diu, have also provided 100% of their households with tap water connections. Tap connectivity doesn’t automatically imply access to regular potable water, according to the Water Resources Ministry.
The Jal Jeevan scheme has a financial outlay of ₹3.60 lakh crore, with the Centre funding 50% of the cost with States and Union Territories, except for Union Territories without a legislature, where it foots the entire bill, and northeastern and Himalayan States and Union Territories with legislatures, where it funds 90% of the bill.