THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Kerala Water Authority (KWA) will provide fresh 16.47 lakh drinking water tap connections in 719 panchayats soon as part of the Centrally-assisted rural water supply initiative, Jal Jeevan Mission. The KWA decided to provide the facilities in the first meeting after constituting the State Water Sanitation Mission (SWSM) which was held here on Wednesday.
The Jal Jeevan Mission is a project to ensure drinking water tap connections to all the rural households in the country. In the meeting, the district-level SWSM have submitted projects worth `4,343.32 crore The meeting also decided to provide water tap connections to 21.42 lakh rural households in the current financial year. The progress of the scheme was discussed on July 30 in a video conference meeting, in which the Union Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and Water Resources Minister K Krishnan Kutty attended. The Centre hailed the state’s micro-level planning to implement the scheme. The state has submitted an annual activity project worth `6,377 crore for the 2020-21 fiscal.
According to KWA, 52.85 lakh rural households will get tap connections by 2024. Maximum water connections will be issued through ongoing and completed water supply projects of the KWA, Jalanidhi, block and district panchayats, and other agencies. The scheme will be implemented in the state in three phases. The first phase, spanning three to six months, will be dedicated to planning, capacity building, selection of panchayats and signing of a g reements for pro j e c t implementation.