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Address of Hon Minister of Jalshakti Government of India Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat for International Water Association Water Congress and Exhibition at Copenhagen, Denmark on 12th September, 2022

Posted on: September 12, 2022 | Back | Print

My warm greetings to your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen. On behalf of the Prime Minister Mr Narendra Modi and Government of India, I thank the Government of Denmark for inviting me to the 2022 IWA Water Congress and Exhibition. I would also like to congratulate IWA for successfully organizing Water Congress and Exhibition this year providing opportunities to water sector professionals to come together for attempting solutions to water and climate change related issues today.

Recognising the importance of holistic water management, our Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi  has brought various activities related to water under one umbrella and formed an integrated ministry in the name of Jal Shakti in 2019. This has given greater synergy and coherence to water management in India and we have committed investments of more than US $ 140  Billion by 2024 in water sector. 

Along with massive investment from Government, we adopted community centric approach whereby at least 10% funds are contributed by community in every program ensuring community ownership and participation. These efforts are also sustained with the creation of innovative funding sources like Swaccha Bharat Kosh and Jal Jivan Kosh where tax free contributions are made for creating sanitation and drinking water infrastructure. Funds available with industry partners under Corporate Social Responsibility are also dovetailed through these sources.

In our efforts in achieving SDG-6 to ‘ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all’, under Swachh Bharat Mission - over 105 million toilets were constructed transforming behavioural pattern of  more than 600 million Indians since 2014. As aspirational country, we already achieved the SDG goal of ODF in 2019 and fast paced to achieve universal coverage of safe and reliable drinking water by providing Functional Household Tapwater Connection to more than 193 million households by 2024 – well before the target set by world for 2030. 

Next level, we are working to create ODF+ communities and villages with sustainable Solid and Liquid Waste Management practices. Today you can see more than 1,10,000 such villages across India. In tandem with the action for climate change and water pollution, we are working on unique river rejuvenation and conservation program in the world. Namami Gange Mission envisage treatment of 5000MLD of untreated sewage and industrial waste water and cycling back in reuse in sacred river Ganga basin, touching lives of more than 400 million Indians in the process. The mission is attuned with the conservation of aquatic life, flora and fauna in the Ganga basin, propagating sustainable agricultural practices and livelihood for local communities. We are working in a big manner for Rainwater Conservation and Groundwater Recharge related activities through various schemes.

Looking the impact of climate change, my firm belief is that water is an universal issue and I sincerely hope that this unique platform of idea sharing by water sector professionals will provide all of us the opportunity to learn from the experiences and expertise of each other.

Jai Hind !!!