How Will India Meet The Demands Of Clean Drinking Water For Its Growing Population?

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“Don’t let the water run in the sink, our life is on the brink”, this was a famous proverb coined time to time by many philosophers.

Now, it is all the more important to take this proverb into account before it’s too late. While water is a sustainable resource, it is in the meantime, a limited resource. Water is the most valuable natural resource on earth. Rapid urbanization and incessant exploitation of resources have led to the deficiency of water. The availability of potable water is highly under stress. It is vital to value that just 3% of the world’s water is fresh and approximately 33% of it is distant. The water crisis in India seems to be the most vulnerable, and we need to find a way to come out of this crisis urgently.

According to the World Bank, about 163 million Indians need access to safe drinking water.

As per the NITI Aayog report, more than 600 million Indians are facing high to extreme water stress, and 75% of households do not have drinking water on their premises. According to the World Bank, about 163 million Indians need access to safe drinking water. With the planet’s second-biggest population at 1.3 billion and an anticipated increase to 1.7 billion by 2050, India seems to be powerless to provide that population safe, clean water. Even water demand in the country is likely to double by 2030. Recently, a report found that 21 cities including New Delhi, Bengaluru, Chennai and Hyderabad are set to run out of groundwater by 2020, affecting an estimated 100 million people.

We need to focus on primary causes and the various ways using which we can get out of this crisis and save this planet. The main reason behind this situation is the lack of awareness among citizens which has led to over-exploitation of water resources—without paying much heed to the necessity of water conservation. First of all, we need to circulate the message of the importance of water conservation and the consequences of their negligence to every citizen.

Man looks on as he collects items thrown by devotees as religious offerings next to idols of Hindu god Ganesh in waters of Yamuna river in New Delhi
Yamuna river in New Delhi, India. REUTERS/Anindito Mukherjee

The second major contributor to this crisis is increasing water pollution mainly because of the release of chemicals and effluents into rivers streams and ponds. The government needs to take some strict and exemplary actions against such polluters. They should come out with more steps like creating “Jal Shakti Ministry”—a dedicated ministry overseeing various issues related to water. The government needs to take keen measures towards watershed development, using and recharging borewell structures, the revival of traditional and other water bodies etc. The government, as well as the citizens, need to take water conservation and rainwater harvesting into consideration as well. Intensive deforestation needs to be stopped immediately as well.

We all know India’s urban population is said to increase rapidly, so it becomes imperative to consider water resource availability and estimate the carrying capacity of cities to deal with such levels of water scarcity in future. This planet’s survival is only possible if water conservation is carried out seriously. Everyone should contribute their best to save the future.

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