informs Sanjeev Jaiswal, IAS, Principal Secretary, Water Supply & Sanitation Department, Government of Maharashtra in an exclusive conversation with Shivani Babbar of APAC News Network.
What was the target in terms of providing quality water to villages in Maharashtra under the Jal Jeevan Mission program?
The Jal Jeevan Mission program has aimed to provide a tap connection to rural households for providing drinking water in adequate quantity (55 LPCD) of prescribed quality on a regular basis.
From the start of the Mission on 15th August 2019, the percentage of households (HHs) with
Tap connections was 33.01% and now this has increased to 74.15%.
Out of the 1,46,73,230 HHs in rural Maharashtra, 38,45,487 HHs are yet to be provided with an Individual tap connection. The planned month for saturation is March 2025
What were the plans conceived and actions implemented to provide village-wise water on a Mission Mode?
As per the Saturation plan of FY 2022-23, 34,753 schemes have been taken up by
the Zilla Parishad and Maharashtra Jeevan Pradhikaran. Work orders for all these schemes have been issued. Out of all these 34,753 schemes, work for 2230 schemes is completed, and the remaining scheme works are in progress.
Electro chlorination unit to PWSS is proposed in all 34 districts which cover 35,000
Single Village Schemes. The preliminary work of the Survey for the installation of EC
units is completed in 20,391 villages.
From the start of the Mission, till date, Maharashtra has achieved 74.15% Functional
Household Tap Connection (FHTC). Out of the total 40,327 villages in Rural Maharashtra, 9,375 villages are reported as Har Ghar Jal and 1,193 are declared as certified Har Ghar Jal village.
How would you drive the co-ordination with the DMs and Collectors to augment the water resources and collaborate on all the schemes?
The concept of SWSM/WSSO was started in 1999 for coordination, convergence, and
policy guidance at the State level, headed by the Chief Secretary of the State. Convergence is one of the crucial components of the Jal Jeevan Mission which aims to achieve water security.
At the District level, DWSM is responsible for the overall implementation of JJM. DWSM is chaired by the District Collector and co-chaired by the CEO, ZP. One of the functions of DWSM is to ensure the availability of funds for source sustainability works and greywater management in villages through convergence. Projects are cleared only if these components are part of the DPR.
Convergence with other Government programs for source sustainability and greywater management etc. is taken care of during the preparation of the Village Action Plan (VAP). The VAP has been approved by the Gram Sabha.
Convergence of JJM activities with such ongoing schemes will augment funds and
enhance water resources in terms of quality, quantity, and longevity. For rainwater harvesting and artificial recharge of drinking water sources, DWSM has planned to decide on the convergence of activities and funds from different sources like MGNREGS, SBMG (Phase-II), 15th Finance commission, MPLAD, MLALAD, etc
What have been the progress and current status update of water supply and sanitation missions in the Kokan and in the Vidarbha regions?
In Kokan Region,
Under Jal Jeevan Mission, 4,705 no. of schemes have been taken up in 5 districts of the
Kokan region, out of which 188 schemes have been completed and rest of the schemes are in progress.
Totally 5796 villages exist in the Kokan Region. In 5786 villages, 11,55,842 HHs out of the total of 18,93,743 HHs are provided with Individual tap connections It means 61.03% HHs are covered with tap connections in the remaining villages.
Regarding PWS scheme villages, nearly 10% of villages i.e; 597 villages are having
In Nagpur Region,
Under Jal Jeevan Mission, 6,385 schemes have been taken up in 6 districts of Nagpur region, out of which 906 schemes have been completed and the rest are in progress.
Gadchiroli district is an aspirational district which comes in Nagpur region which has
been taken under Mission Utkarsh by GoI. In Gadchiroli, 1082 schemes have been taken up and out of which 256 schemes have been completed and rest are in progress.
In Gadchiroli district, 764 solar based PWSS have been taken up. GoM is targeting to achieve 100% FHTC in Gadchiroli district by December 2023.
Total 6914 villages are existing in Nagpur Region. In 6804 villages, 13,32,235 HHs out
of the total 18,04,617 HHs are provided with Individual Tap connections. Coverageis around 74%.
Regarding PWS scheme villages, nearly 40% of villages i.e; 2,718 villages are having 100% FHTCs.
In Amravati Region,
Under Jal Jeevan Mission, 3,856 schemes have been taken up in 5 districts of
Amravati region, out of which 432 schemes have been completed and rest are in progress.
Washim is one the aspirational districts which comes in Amravati region. GoM is targeting to achieve 100% FHTC in Washim district by March 2024.
Total 6132 villages are existing in Amravati Region. In 6093 villages, 14,69,523 HHs
out of the total 18,82,949 HHs are provided with Individual Tap connections. Coverage is around 78%. Regarding PWS scheme villages, nearly 35% of villages i.e; 2,083 villages are having
What has been Maharashtra’s progress on the mapping of groundwater-resources across the state? How can districts in other states replicate these pilots in the future? What are the expected benefits of this project undertaken in conjunction with MRSAC Nagpur?
This is one of the pioneer programs taken up in the state. Till now, the state has mapped
only groundwater potential zones in the state with the help of Central agencies like ISRO and CGWB at 1:50,000 scale. It is a very broad scale considering the state’s geological conditions. This is first time any state has gone to map its groundwater resources, assets and groundwater potential zones at a micro level of 1:10,000 scale.
GSDA and MRSAC are jointly working on this program, MRSAC for mapping purposes
and GSDA for ground verification. MRSAC has almost completed the primary mapping and at present piloting this activity in 5 districts is in progress. Such activity / program is going to be very useful for all southern states, Gujarat, MP, Chhattisgarh, Orissa etc as they have similar conditions. Replication of this activity could ensure groundwater availability for them as well.
Once this activity is over, the state will be able to estimate and plan proper use of its groundwater resources more accurately and also save it for future generations. This will also help in predicting scarcities, priority treatment of scarcity areas and monitoring of draught like situation in such areas.
By mapping of water resources assets and geo-tagging of water conservation structures, wells, and other assets, it will be possible to find out/ demarcate the areas which need to be stringent monitoring and regulation. Also, by mapping drinking water supply scheme assets, demarcation of areas which requires to be protected,will be possible
With this activity all the landforms and geological setups will be mapped which was not possible earlier as these were not mappable. This will help in identification of the dimensions of recharge area for drinking water sources and for protecting such area from over extraction, contamination.
Also, Multi Criteria Decision Analysis (MCDA) technique will be used along with updated thematic layers and field observations, recharge priority zones will be delineated and ideal location for planning and undertaking suitable source sustainability measures along with its type will be possible
How soon will the Maharashtra State Groundwater Regulations align with the Central Act and what will be the benefits derived thereof?
In 2012, Maharashtra has come up with comprehensive Groundwater (Development & Management) Act, 2009. In 2020, the Centre has come up with Guidelines to regulate and control ground water extraction in India through Central Ground Water Authority and suggested to align states act accordingly. There are Some provisions / guidelines in both regulatory mechanisms which are contrary to each other. Therefore after inputs from state Law and Judiciary department, conscious decision was taken to go for a new act as amendments or enacting a new law will take same time.
We have already prepared a draft bill through GSDA and had multiple rounds of discussions. Very soon we will present this act to Hon. CM, Dy CM and Cabinet and take necessaryapprovals.
The important benefits are–
Farmers will be exempted from the payment of charges towards cess and from the provisions like compulsory crop plan adoption etc.
Various provisions will be implemented for the protection of the public drinking water sources and for taking suitable measures for their sustainability and quality.
Groundwater extraction for commercial, Industrial, Infrastructure, Mining, Bulk Use, Tanker supply will be on charge.
The revenue thus generated shall be utilized for ground water recharging, reparing the advance mechanism for monitoring, and managing the ground water resources of Maharashtra etc.
Expanding the responsibilities and empowering of Ground Water Surveys and Development Agency, which will ultimately result in sustainable management of Groundwater Resources of Maharashtra.
Various provisions of self-regulation, Rain water harvesting, Groundwater Recharge, Recycle, Reuse and IEC.
Preparation of Aquifer Management Plan for urban areas and to undertake all the
measures to keep positive groundwater balance.
How would you ensure a smooth and seamless mediation between the Central Ground Water Authority and the Water Tanker Association of Mumbai so that Infrastructure projects in the city are not disrupted?
After the proposed new law coming to the effect, the state will have authority over all
groundwater aspects. Though excessive extraction will be regulated and extraction
for commercial purposes will be charged, tanker associations Mumbai and across the
state will be facilitated for regulated extraction of groundwater.