The Non-Aligned Movement comprising of 120 nations across the world has always stressed upon the need for preservation of world peace and ensuring national security among the member states and also among the rest of the world.

But issues pertaining to the growth and development of the nations have always been at the heart of the 120-nations led organisation. Be it gender issues or those pertaining to children, be it for the digital world or those catering to cybercrime, be it about conservation and preservation of natural resources and wildlife or those in line with efforts dealing with climate change, the Non-Aligned Movement has always been a helping hand for the nations to enrol their collective efforts to get rid of the problems and get the best.

With the ever-increasing population in the world, the need and demand for natural resources have been ramping up at a pace much faster than that of population. Water, being one of the key ingredients in the existence of life, is what generations today feel less access over. Forming more than two-thirds of the total surface area of the entire Earth, water remains a resource inaccessible by all.

The world population increasing at a fast pace and the never-ending demands and dissatisfaction even after inefficient use of natural resources that prevail in human minds are the actual burden over the planet’s water resources that to a major extent lead to their destruction. The demand for water supply remains a topic that has grabbed attention from every nook and corner of the world, with nations across the globe initiating efforts to prevent wastage and misuse of this natural resource and appointing strategies and policies to ensure its conservation.

In the case of India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi led government at the centre, has, conservation and preservation of water at the heart of the agendas set for the development of the nation. Topping the priority list, water conservation and its availability to every household, is the major focus of the governance that stresses the need for active participation of leaders of the nation towards prioritising the water issue in all its different forms. Unequal access to water, being the global issue, is also a challenge in India but integration of different ministries and departments dealing with water, with re-election of the Modi government for a second consecutive term, has somehow given a ray of hope to provide functional piped water to all India households by 2024.

The government of India remains committed to the provision of functional household tap connections (FHTCs) by 2024 under its Jal Jeevan Mission. The move will be a life changing mission that will enhance the quality of life of the rural people, particularly reducing the drudgery for girls.
With only 3.5 crore Indian rural households been given functional tap-water in past 70-72 years, PM Modi led government has stressed upon sustainability to cover a total of 18.5 crore households in his second term, which is equivalent to four times of what has been achieved until now.
Further intensifying the move, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in her Budget 2019-20 speech had announced the Har GharNal Se Jal programme that forms a crucial part of the Jal Jeevan Mission. The programme aims to implement source sustainability measures as mandatory elements, including sustainable use of surface water and groundwater, recharge and reuse of the greywater, or discharged water, desilting of minor irrigation tanks, water conservation and rainwater harvesting.

Based on a community approach to water, the Jal Jeevan Mission includes information, education and communication as its key components to create people’s movement for water, making it a priority for everyone. Up from last year’s allocation of Rs. 10,000 crore in the field, the government, in its Budget for the year 2020-21 has approved allocation of Rs. 11,500 crores for the government’s latest flagship scheme that aims to add 11.5 million household tap connections by 2020-21 (FY21). And in total, the government has proposed to spend Rs. 3.6 trillion for the programme to be executed by the year 2024.

As the Non-Aligned Movement has backed the idea of collaborative and concerted efforts from all the participants, this major issue too, needs a common eye of focus. The project needs collaborative efforts from both the governments at the centre and the state levels and also from the citizens at individual level. Thus, in this endeavour, Union Minister of Jal Shakti, Gajendra Singh Shekhawat is in close contact with the governments of the States and Union Territories for speedy implementation of the government’s flagship programme.

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