On Tuesday, Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat said that the Centre has set a target of providing clean drinking water to every household by 2024. He said that the government has already started formulating a plan to provide clean drinking water to nearly 14 crore households across the country.

Mr. Shekhawat told the media persons in Delhi, “The prime minister has set a target and our party manifesto talks about providing clean drinking water by 2024. There are nearly 14 crore households where clean drinking water is yet to reach.”

During the national election campaign, PM Modi promised to unite all ministers who are responsible for the water-related issues, into one ministry – the Jal Shakti Ministry. The BJP had also promised to provide clean drinking water to all households in the country.

States like West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, and Odisha gets less than five percent clean drinking water, said the minister. Mr. Shekhawat also added that a total of 81 percent of total habitations in the country have a drinking water supply.

Regarding water-related problems, Mr. Shekhawat held discussions with officials from several states and said there has to be a holistic approach towards water supply and demand. He requested the state government to assemble water-related work under a single department.

The minister said no representative was present from West Bengal in the meeting. Referring to the widening gap between water supply and demand, he emphasized on the water conservation. Drinking and Sanitation Water Secretary Parmeswaran Iyer said that “One point, the minister has been emphasizing is that we need a very flexible approach because one size cannot fit all.”

“There will be third-party verification and the funds will be released by the government. All these details are being worked out,” the official further claimed.

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