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Jal Jeevan Mission

  • 17 Jun 2020
  • 6 min read

Why in News

Recently, the Jal Shakti Ministry has announced that the labourers returning to their home states due to covid-19, will be deployed for the Jal Jeevan Mission.

Key Points

  • The Jal Shakti Ministry has directed various States that returning labour, especially those working in the construction sector (skilled, unskilled and semi-skilled), may be deployed to expedite the completion of works under the scheme.
  • Significance:
    • It is an arrangement that could provide employment to the currently unemployed workers.
    • The mission is being used as a way to ameliorate some of the effects of the mass migration of inter-State workers back to their home States in the wake of the Covid -19 pandemic.
  • Need:
    • Huge Demand for Work: It has been created because of workers returning to their home states from different parts of the country.
  • Tap Water Connections: There is a need for tap water connections in several households under the mission.
    • A revalidation exercise of households and status of tap water found that out of 19.04 crore rural households in the country, 3.23 crore households had tap connections and 15.81 crore households have to be provided functional tap connections.
    • Apart from the ₹11,000 crore in the budget, ₹12,000 crore has been allocated from extra budgetary allowances, and 50% of the ₹60,750 crore allocated by the 15th Finance Commission for rural local bodies is tied to grants for water bodies and sanitation.
  • Construction Sector: Skill mapping by various State governments has shown that a majority of inter-State workers returning home are from the construction sector.
    • In Uttar Pradesh alone, 16 lakh out of the 18 lakh migrant labour mapped till now are from this sector.
    • The State has assured funding of ₹3,382 crore under the Jal Jeevan Mission which would be utilised in providing employment in rural areas to returning migrants.

Jal Jeevan Mission

  • Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM) envisages supply of 55 litres of water per person per day to every rural household through Functional Household Tap Connections (FHTC) by 2024.
  • JJM focuses on integrated demand and supply-side management of water at the local level.
    • Creation of local infrastructure for source sustainability measures as mandatory elements, like rainwater harvesting, groundwater recharge and management of household wastewater for reuse, would be undertaken in convergence with other government programmes/schemes.
  • The Mission is based on a community approach to water and includes extensive Information, Education and Communication as a key component of the mission.
  • JJM looks to create a jan andolan for water, thereby making it everyone’s priority.
  • Funding Pattern: The fund sharing pattern between the Centre and states is 90:10 for Himalayan and North-Eastern States, 50:50 for other states, and 100% for Union Territories.
  • The total allocation to the scheme is over ₹3 lakh crore.

Jal Shakti Ministry

  • The government has created a new ministry called ‘Jal Shakti’ after merging Ministries of Water Resources, River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation along with Drinking Water and Sanitation.
  • ‘Jal Shakti’ ministry will encompass issues ranging from providing clean drinking water, international and inter-states water disputes, to the Namami Gange project aimed at cleaning Ganga and its tributaries, and sub-tributaries.
  • The ministry will roll out the government’s ambitious plan (‘Nal se Jal’ scheme under Jal Jeevan Plan) to provide piped water connection to every household in India by 2024.

Way Forward

  • While the National Skill Development Mission was successful to create a pool of manpower skilled in masonry, plumbing, fitting, electricity etc, there is a growing realisation that returning inter-State labour could be deployed in different sectors due to the prevailing situation of Covid -19.
  • There is a need to encourage all States to consider the existing skill development plans and provide employment to migrant workers.
  • There is a requirement of a strategic framework to provide the returning citizens with suitable employment opportunities through discussions with key stakeholders including State Governments, Industry Associations and Employers.

Source: TH

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