25 Oct : As per 54th Round of National Sample Survey, 70% of urban households reported being served by tap and 21% by tube wells or hand pumps. Considerable effort is needed to ensure availability of adequate and safe drinking water in the country.
Government of India is supplementing efforts of State Governments in this regard in urban areas through the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) and Urban Infrastructure Development Schemes (UIDSSMT) for Small and Medium Towns. In the rural areas, financial assistance is provided through Rural Drinking Water Component of Bharat Nirman and Accelerated Rural Water Supply Programme.
To comprehensively address various issues related to drinking water supply including checking exploitation and wastage of water, the Government of India, Ministry of Water Resources has formulated National Water Policy 2002 which accords highest priority to drinking water supply over all other requirements. Further, the Central Ground Water Board (CGWB) under the Ministry of Water Resources, Govt. of India is monitoring the exploitation of ground water across the country.
The Ministry is also promoting a number of reforms in the water sector like revision of bye-laws to make rain water harvesting mandatory in all buildings and reuse of recycled water through JNNURM and UIDSSMT. The Ministry is also promoting implementation of Service Level Benchmarks which specifies that the loss/leakages of water should be restricted to a maximum of 20%.
This information was given by Shri Ajay Maken, MOS Urban Development in reply to a question by Shri Sugrib Singh, Shri G.M. Siddeswara, Shri Kishanbhai V. Patel and Shri Nand Kumar Sai in Rajya Sabha today.