New Delhi, 21 April 2021: Annual Action Plan of Arunachal Pradesh to provide tap water connection to rural households under Jal Jeevan Mission was presented today via video conference with details of saturation plan for the financial year 2021-22. During the presentation, Arunachal reiterated their commitment to achieve ‘Har Ghar Jal’ target by 2023. Arunachal has 2.17 lakh rural households, out of which 1.01 (47%) lakh have access to tap water supply. In 2020-21, about 65,000 new tap water connections were provided in the hilly State. In 2021-22, the State plans to make 3 districts, 18 Blocks and 1,825 villages Har Ghar Jal, which means 100% tap water connection in every rural household in these areas. The State plans to provide 65,000 tap connections in 2021-22.

The national committee urged the State to make concerted efforts and provide tap water connection in SC/ ST dominated habitations, Aspirational districts on priority. JJM is a flagship programme of the Union Government, which aims to provide piped tap water in every rural household. In the previous financial year 2020-21, Rs 345 Crore central fund was released to the State to provide assured tap water supply. In 2021-22, the State is likely to get Rs 600 Crore as Central fund under Jal Jeevan Mission. Last year, the State was incentivised through performance grant owing to better performance. Ministry officials asked the State to explore convergence of funds from different sources for effective utilization of resources for water supply works.

As informed by the State, 86% Healthcare centres, 79% Schools, 60% Ashramshalas and 57% Anganwadi centre in Arunachal Pradesh have piped water supply. The State plans to achieve 100% piped water supply in all these institutions in the first quarter of 2021-22. The state also plans to engage experts at State, district and division level which will help expedite the implementation of JJM and help find gaps which need to addressed as they march ahead to achieve 100% coverage in remote regions of the state.

Under Jal Jeevan Mission, water quality testing laboratories at district & state levels are opened for general public to test the water at nominal rate. Community is being encouraged for surveillance of water quality. PHE Department is facilitating to empower and engage with the community. For this, activities are planned like timely procurement and supply of field test kits to the community, identification of at least five women in every village for community engagement, training women on how to use the Field Test Kits and reporting the test result findings. In 2020-21, Arunachal Pradesh has undertaken 83.4% chemical tests of water sources and 91.8% tests at delivery points. They have undertaken 100% chemical and bacteriological tests for schools and anganwadi centres. The State was asked to get NABL accreditation for its water testing laboratories, so that people can get water tests conducted at nominal rates.

The Annual Action Plan emphasizes on drinking water source strengthening/ augmentation, water supply, greywater treatment & reuse, and operation & maintenance of in-village water supply system. The State plans intense skill training of State & district programme management unit staff, ISA team, Village Water & Sanitation Committee and Pani Samiti members. About 5 thousand personnel in the State will be trained as mason, plumber and electrician. This trained manpower will in turn be used to build the water supply infrastructure as well as for their operation and maintenance.

Under Jal Jeevan Mission, in 2021-22, in addition to Rs 50,011 Crore budgetary allocation for JJM, there is also Rs 26,940 Crore assured fund available under the 15th Finance Commission tied-grant to rural local bodies for water & sanitation, matching State share and externally aided as well as State funded projects. Thus, in 2021-22, more than Rs. 1 lakh Crore is planned to be invested in the country on ensuring tap water supply to rural homes. This kind of huge investment in rural areas will boost the rural economy.

Under Jal Jeevan Mission, efforts are made to dovetail all available resources at village level by convergence of different programmes viz. MGNREGS, JJM, SBM, 15th Finance Commission Grants to PRIs, CAMPA funds, Local Area Development Funds, etc. It was urged to involve the local village community/ Gram Panchayats and or user groups in planning, implementation, management, operation and maintenance of water supply systems in villages to ensure long-term sustainability thereby achieving drinking water security. The State was asked to start IEC campaign to create awareness among people.

This Assessment exercise is undertaken by the Mission every year to deliberate with the State officials and finalize the Annual Action Plan (AAP). A national committee under the Chairmanship of the Secretary, Department of Drinking Water & Sanitation along with members from various Central Ministries/ Departments and NITI Aayog assesses the proposed Plan. After finalization of the AAP, funds are released to the State based on progress, expenditure incurred from time-to-time, coupled with regular field visits by the technical team to guide and provide technical assistance for smooth implementation of the planned activities and help the State achieve the goal to make every village ‘Har Ghar Jal’ under Jal Jeevan Mission.