PRIME Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said Rs 3.5 lakh crore will be spent in the next five years under the newly formed Jal Jeevan Mission, which aims to provide piped water (‘Har Ghar Jal’) to all rural households by 2024. He said the move was aimed at fulfilling legendary socialist late Ram Manohar Lohia’s dream of providing water, and toilets, to mitigate the hardships faced by women. “In the 70s, Ram Manohar Lohia had said women faced two problems -toilets and water.
Governments have come and gone. But, we decided to fulfil Lohia’s dream. We worked on providing toilets to women and ensuring water supply,” Modi said. He also praised the Maharashtra Government’s water grid initiative in the arid Marathwada region, claiming that availability of water will increase in every house once the scheme is completed.
The PM was addressing a state-level ‘Mahila Saksham Melava’ or Empowered Women’s Meet of Self Help Groups, organised by the Maharashtra State Rural Livelihood Mission (UMED). He also inaugurated the 10,000-acre Aurangabad Industrial City (AURIC), the country’s first greenfield industrial smart city and part of the upcoming Delhi-Mumbai industrial corridor. Speaking ahead of the Prime Minister, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis expressed confidence that the Centre would provide all assistance to ensure the Rs 20,000 crore grid plan, to transport water from Konkan region that flows into sea to the Godavari basin in Marathwada, is completed expeditiously.