Only 8 states of the country have made arrangements for drinking water, these states are in bad condition: Parliamentary Committee

New Delhi: Only eight states of the country have ensured drinking water facilities in all their schools and states like Meghalaya, Tripura, Arunachal Pradesh are far behind in this campaign. This information has been received from the report of a Parliamentary Standing Committee recently tabled in the Parliament. In view of this situation, the Parliamentary Committee has recommended to the Ministry of Education to ensure the supply of safe drinking water through pipes under the Nal Se Jal Mission in every educational institution by the end of 2021-22.

The report of the Parliamentary Committee on Education, Women, Child Development and Youth Affairs tabled in Parliament during the Monsoon Session states, “The committee notes that eight states have ensured drinking water facilities in all schools in their territories.” However, states like Meghalaya, Tripura, Arunachal Pradesh are far behind in this campaign. It has been asked to coordinate with the Ministry of Rural Development and Ministry of Jal Shakti in this regard.

The Department of School Education and Literacy, Ministry of Education informed the committee that under the National Jal Jeevan Mission, all Anganwadi centers, schools, ashram shalas and other public institutions in the village have started to make provision for safe piped drinking water supply. The Department of Drinking Water and Sanitation, Ministry of Jal Shakti wrote a letter on 14 October 2020 about the “100 days campaign”.

It said that the Department of School Education and Literacy had written a letter on November 12, 2020, to the Secretary (Education) of all the States and Union Territories, asking them to supply piped/tap water in toilets for girls and boys, It has been requested to take necessary action for mapping each school, providing hand washing facilities and drinking water facilities.

According to the report, the committee, while appreciating the work done by the department, recommended that the department should convey the results of the action taken as well as the concrete time frame within which safe and pollution-free drinking water should be provided to every educational institution in the country. Supply target will be met. The committee has also sought information about the specific measures taken for the northeastern states, which have lagged behind in this campaign.

Recently, the Ministry of Jal Shakti had said that 6.85 lakh schools, 6.80 lakh Anganwadi centers and 2.36 lakh community health centers in the country are supplied with tap water for drinking and cooking mid-day meals. Apart from this, toilets of 6.18 lakh schools have tap water and 7.52 lakh schools have handwashing facilities with tap water.