Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM)



In short:

  • Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM) has been launched which aims at providing Functional Household Tap Connection (FHTC) to every rural household by 2024.

  • Functional Household Tap Connection [FHTC] means a tap connection to a rural household for providing drinking water in adequate quantity of prescribed quality on regular basis.

  •  Functionality of a tap connection is defined as having infrastructure, i.e. household tap connection providing water in adequate quantity, i.e. at least 55 (litre per capita per day) lpcd, of prescribed quality, i.e. BIS: 10500 standard, on regular basis, i.e. continuous supply in long-term.

In Detail:

Historical perspective:

  • In 1972-73, Accelerated Rural Water Supply Programme (ARWSP) was launched. The aim was to supplement the efforts of State Governments, especially in areas of acute scarcity and those endemic to water borne diseases.

  •  In 2004-05, ARWSP became part of Bharat Nirman aiming at full coverage of habitations by 2008-09.

  • The ARWSP was implemented till the year 2008-09 of Eleventh Plan (2007-12).

  • In 2009-10, it was modified and renamed as National Rural Drinking Water Programme (NRDWP).

  •  In 2013, certain changes were introduced in NRDWP, viz. i.) Providing focus on pipe water supply schemes; ii.) wherever possible, enhancing service level from 40 lpcd to 55 lpcd; iii.) providing greater thrust on water quality and Japanese Encephalitis-Acute Encephalitis 16 Syndrome (JE-AES) affected districts; iv.) waste water treatment, recycling;

  • Now with the launch of JJM, all the schemes and programs under NRDWP have been subsumed.



  • To provide FHTC to every rural household;

  • To give priority to provide FHTCs by March, 2021 in water quality-affected areas, JE-AES areas, Desert Development Programme areas, Drought Prone Area Program areas, Aspirational districts, and Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (SAGY) villages.

  • To provide functional tap connection to Schools, Anganwadi centres, GP buildings, Health centres, wellness centres and community buildings;

  •  To monitor functionality of tap connections;

  • To promote and ensure voluntary ownership among local community by way of contribution in cash, kind and/ or labour and shramdaan;

  • To assist in ensuring sustainability of water supply system, i.e. water source, water supply infrastructure, and funds for regular operation and management O&M;

  • To empower and develop human resource in the sector such that the demands of construction, plumbing, electrical, water quality management, water treatment, catchment protection, O&M, etc. are taken care of in short and long term;

  • To bring awareness on various aspects and significance of safe drinking water and involvement of stakeholders in manner that make water everyone’s business.



Funds under JJM can be utilized on following items:

1. Development of in-village piped water supply infrastructure.

What does in village piped Water Supply Infrastructure mean?
 It Includes :
 The piped water supply infrastructure of a new scheme/
 Retrofitting of existing scheme/
 Augmentation of existing water source(s)
 ESR (Elevated Storage Reservoir) ,
 sump,
 rain water harvesting,
 artificial recharge structures,
 grey water management infrastructure,
 washing/ bathing place,
 cattle troughs,

2. To provide tap water connection to every rural household;

3. Development of reliable drinking water sources and/ or augmentation of existing sources to provide long-term sustainability of water supply system;

4. Wherever necessary, bulk water transfer, treatment plants and distribution network to cater to every rural household;

5. Technological interventions for removal of contaminants where water quality is an issue;

6. Retrofitting of completed and ongoing schemes to provide FHTCs at minimum service level of 55 lpcd;

7. Grey water management;

8. Support activities, i.e., HRD, training, development of utilities, water quality labs, water quality testing & surveillance, R&D, knowledge centre, capacity building of communities, etc.;

9. Funds to meet any unforeseen challenges/ issues due to natural disasters/ calamities.

10. Efforts should be made to source funds from different sources/ programmes and convergence is the key.



 Under JJM, States/ UTs are to plan for achieving drinking water security and to provide FHTC to every rural household.

 It may not be possible or feasible that State Government/ Department manages water supply to every household and therefore role of Gram Panchayat and/ or its sub-committee/ local community becomes critical in planning, implementation, management, operation and maintenance of water supply within the villages.

 Moreover, Panchayats have constitutional mandate to manage drinking water.

 The Mission will have community participation, ownership and contribution in all decisions pertaining to water supply systems.

 Communities can ensure that every rural household has FHTC delivering water in adequate quantity (minimum 55 lpcd) of prescribed quality (BIS:10500) and on regular basis as may be decided by the Gram Panchayat and/ or its sub-committee, i.e., VWSC (Village Water and Sanitation Committee )/ Paani Samiti/ User Group, etc.

 State Government and its Departments are to play a true role of facilitator. This approach will bring long-term sustainability in the sector.

 As on 1st April 2019, about 81% of rural habitations in the country have access to potable water through a wide range of schemes. whereas About 46% of rural habitations catering to about 54% of rural population have piped water supply having provision for atleast 40 lpcd, which includes household tap connections and public stand posts.

 As reported by States, 18% of rural households have tap connections.

 Rural women and adolescent girls spend a lot of time and energy in getting water for day-to-day use.

 This results in lack of participation of women in income generation opportunities, loss of school days for girls and adverse health impacts.

To achieve the objective of JJM, following strategy may be adopted:

1. FHTC may be provided in every household with three delivery points (taps), viz. kitchen, washing & bathing area and toilet.

2. Priority will be accorded first to retrofit on-going piped water supply schemes and then to completed piped water supply schemes providing water through stand post;

3. In villages with sufficient groundwater availability of prescribed quality within the village boundary, the same local water source will be used;

4. In villages with functional hand pumps, the depth can be deepened if required and can also be used as a source to meet the service delivery level;

5. In tribal/ hilly/ forested areas, option of gravity and/ or solar power-based water supply schemes with low O&M expenditure to be explored and preferred.

6. In hills and mountains, springs as a reliable source for drinking water to be explored;
7. In hot and cold deserts, innovative approaches and possibility technology intervention will be explored;

8. In villages with sufficient groundwater availability but having quality issues, suitable treatment technology may be explored;

9. In villages falling in drought-prone areas, conjunctive use of multiple sources of water can be explored such as ponds, lakes, rivers, groundwater, supply from long distance, rainwater harvesting and/ or artificial recharge;

10. In villages with water quality issues and non-availability of suitable surface water sources in nearby areas, it may be more appropriate to transfer bulk water from long distance.

11. In water quality-affected habitations, especially with Arsenic and Fluoride contaminants, potable water has to be ensured on priority.

12. Since, planning and implementation of piped water supply scheme based on a safe water source will take time, as a purely interim measure, Community Water Purification Plants (CWPPs) may be taken up to provide 8-10 lpcd potable water to meet drinking and cooking need of every household residing in such villages/ habitations.

13. At the national level, there will be National Jal Jeevan Mission (NJJM). In the States/ UTs, there will be State Water and Sanitation Mission (SWSM) and in each district there will be District Water and Sanitation Mission (DWSM). At the village level, in consonance with the Constitutional provision there will be Gram Panchayat and/ or its sub-committee, i.e. VWSC -Village Water and Sanitation Committee / Paani Samiti/ User Group, etc.

14. Key to success of JJM is active participation of women at all levels of institutional arrangements with special emphasis at village level.

About the author: Aman Kumar

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