Finding the positive, Jharkhand government on Water Index Survey
As the NITI Aayog Water Index Survey positions the state on the lowest in the index, Jharkhand IPRD found the a ray of light in the dark crowd. In a press release by the government it has flaunted that Jharkhand scores 2nd highest rank on the incremental ranking on NITI’s Composite Water Management Index (CWMI).
Ranchi: As the NITI Aayog Water Index Survey positions the state on the lowest in the index, Jharkhand IPRD found the a ray of light in the dark crowd. In a press release by the government it has flaunted that Jharkhand scores 2nd highest rank on the incremental ranking on NITI’s Composite Water Management Index (CWMI). Meanwhile Water Index scores vary widely across states and most states have achieved a score below 50%.
The Water Index scores for FY 16-17 vary from 76 (Gujarat) to 26 (Meghalaya), with the median score being ~49 for Non-Himalayan states and ~31 for North-Eastern and Himalayan states. Gujarat is the highest performer, closely followed by other High performers such as Madhya Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh.Low performers are concentrated across the populous agricultural belts of North and East India, that has Jharkhand standing at the last position.
Jharkhand with a score of 35 stands at the end of the list below Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar with a score of 38. Though Jharkhand provided a list of projects (scheme wise) under which water bodies were planned to be restored, but plannings are yet to be implemented.
To add to the trouble the state comes of list of AUs under critical and over-exploited category and their respective change in the water table. The report says urban water access is high on average, significant gaps remain across the country, and waste water treatment remains stuck at the national average of ~33%. Bihar, Jharkhand, Assam, and Nagaland reporting less than half of the urban population having access.
However, on a positive note a case study on Rural sanitation: Jharkhand’s community-focused toilet building scheme states that the step taken by the government made a push towards removing open defecation is likely to have contributed to Jharkhand’s good performance on the ‘Rural drinking water’ theme, with the state having the third highest score, and a ~40% fall in the water quality incidents in rural areas.
Overall the report concludes on a PCP note that says that the state has no doubt done a great Job in rural drinking water, it needs to walk miles in surface water restoration, on farm use and waste water management.