Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has said his government will ensure all homes in the national Capital get round-the clock piped drinking water in the next five years. Kejriwal made the statement on Monday after inaugurating a water treatment plant at Chandrawal, which is expected to be completed by 2022.
The Aam Aadmi Party chief said that 88% of colonies in the city receive piped water, which he said was a 30% increase since the party came to power in 2015. “It is our mission that in the future, everyone in Delhi receives clean water straight from their taps, without requiring any additional filtration,” he said. “On this platform, I guarantee to the people of Delhi that the government has been working towards fulfilling water requirements in the future. I am sure that we will be able to provide clean drinking water 24x7 to every resident of Delhi by 2024.”
Kejriwal said the government was working on long-term solutions such as large-scale rainwater harvesting and exploring the potential of the Yamuna floodplain. “Our engineers have successfully plugged leakage of water and theft has also been controlled to a large extent,” he added. “With the same amount of water we have been able to improve the management. Illegal tankers have been cracked down upon.”
Earlier in the day, with Union Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat to demand new allocation for Delhi’s water share, which has been the same since 1996. The minister said he discussed the Capital’s water problems with Kejriwal. “The meeting with you was immensely constructive,” Shekhawat told Kejriwal on Twitter. “We have to work together to get rid of Delhi’s water problems. Thank you very much.”
Yamuna Jiye Abhiyaan’s convener Manoj Misra praised the Delhi government’s target but stressed on the need to manage water supply. “The main challenge they would face is availability of water,” The Indian Express quoted him as saying. “They can lay pipes but whether these pipes will carry the required amount of water is another issue. Steps need to be taken to address water wastage and recycling water for non-potable purposes.”
The AAP has made the promise of piped water to all of Delhi in the past. However, several hurdles, including land availability and mushrooming of unauthorised colonies, have affected the project. Kejriwal had also raised the matter during a meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi last week.
The Capital gets 70% of its water from the Yamuna river and the rest comes from other sources such as the upper Ganga canal in Sonia Vihar and government-controlled borewells.