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India at UNGA stresses need for building resilient systems for sustainable use of water

News Agencies | Updated on: 19 March 2021, 9:09 IST
Union Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat (File photo)

India on Thursday stressed the need for building resilient systems that can provide long-term solutions for the sustainable use of water.

Speaking at a United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) high-level meeting, Union Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat said: "There is no doubt that in our journey to achieve the 2030 agenda, water supply and sanitation have to be the centre of our global efforts. We need to make water available to the most vulnerable. At the same time, we need to build resilient systems that provide long term solutions for sustainable use of water."

The minister said that India has been implementing a time-bound strategy to achieve Sustainable Development Goal-6, keeping in mind that by 2030, water demand will outpace water availability by two times. He also mentioned that a new Ministry of Water Conservation and Management was established in 2019 under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to address water-related issues.

"The Clean India Mission, which was launched in 2014, to achieve universal sanitation became the world's biggest sanitation campaign with the construction of 110 million toilets in only six years resulting in an open defecation free India. Recently, we have launched the "Water is Life Mission" (Jal Jeevan), a USD 50 billion project to provide safe and piped drinking water to all households by 2024," he said.

Shekhawat also said that the Clean India campaign successfully affected a positive behavioural transformation by urging people to adopt better sanitation and hygiene standards., while also noting women's role in the management of water and sanitation facilities.

He also recited a quote by BR Ambedkar: "Water being the wealth of the people and its distribution being uncertain, the correct approach is not to complain against nature but to conserve water."


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First published: 19 March 2021, 9:05 IST