The Centre on Sunday said that within 10 months of starting a campaign to provide clean tap water connection to children in schools and anganwadi centres, about 66 per cent schools and 60 per cent anganwadi centres now have access to clean water.
On September 29 last year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had appealed all states and union territories (UTs) to work on priority to make sure every school and anganwadi centre has tap water connection to ensure availability of safe tap water to children.
Consequently, on the occasion of Gandhi Jayanti, Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat launched a 100-days campaign to bring awareness and urgency for providing clean drinking water to children across the country.
"In less than ten months since the launch of this campaign, provision of tap water has been made in 6.85 lakh (66 per cent) schools, 6.80 lakh (60 per cent) anganwadi centres (AWCs)and 2.36 lakh (69 per cent) gram panchayats and community healthcare centres (CHCs) in villages across India," the Jal Shakti Ministry said in a statement.
Despite the COVID-19 pandemic and disruptions, nine states and one UT -- Andhra Pradesh, Goa, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Kerala, Punjab, Sikkim, Tamil Nadu, and Andaman and Nicobar Islands -- have achieved 100 per cent coverage of tap water supply in schools, ashramshalas and anganwadi centres, it said.
While 6.18 lakh schools have tap water in toilets/urinals, 7.52 lakh schools now have tap water hand washing facility, the statement said, adding that tap water supply not only contributes to better health of children but also prevents spread of water-borne diseases.
"To ensure water availability and treatment of used water, in 91.9 thousand schools, rain water harvesting and in 1.05 lakh schools, grey water management systems have been put in place. This will not only boost the water availability but also create awareness among children and inspire them to learn water management in their growing stage," it added.
The Jal Shakti Ministry is implementing the Centre's Jal Jeevan Mission for supply of drinking water through individual household tap connections to all households in rural India by 2024. Under the Mission, 4.57 crore tap water connections have been provided in last 23 months, taking the total households with such connections to 7.80 crore (41.14 per cent).
Copyright©2021 Living Media India Limited. For reprint rights: Syndications Today