Tap water reaches India’s highest village in Himachal

Tashigang, a hamlet located at an altitude of 15,256 feet in the picturesque Spiti Valley and close to the Indo-China border, has been provided with functional domestic tap connections, officials said on Sunday.

This village in Lahaul-Spiti district is situated at the highest altitude in India.

The state government has achieved cent per cent target of providing functional household tap connections (FHTC) in four districts — Una, Chamba, Kinnaur and Lahaul-Spiti under the Jal Jeevan Mission and achieved 93.05 per cent target, an official statement of the state government said.

So far, 24 blocks, 2,331 gram panchayats and 14,661 villages have been fully covered under the Jal Jeevan Mission, it said.

During the last two and a half years, 8.44 lakh households were provided tap connections, while in the past 72 years only 7.63 lakh households were provided connections, as per the statement.

Under the mission, Rs 4,418.37 crore has been allocated by the government of India to the state, including an incentive of Rs 1,028.43 crore, it said.

Water supply has been provided to 411 habitations having 22,763 houses in remote Kinnaur district. Under the mission, 219 schemes were approved in the district, out of which 155 schemes completed.

In another remote district of Lahaul-Spiti, water supply has been given to 364 habitations having 7,284 houses. Seven schemes are being implemented in the district. The total estimated cost of the works being executed is Rs 122 crore.

Chamba district has been selected as an aspirational district by NITI Aayog. In this district, including tribal sub-divisions of Pangi and Bharmour, work is being done on schemes of Rs 420 crore.

The target of 100 per cent coverage has been achieved by providing functional tap connections to all 121,752 households in the district, said the statement.

Under the Jal Jeevan Mission, women’s participation has been ensured in the district in resource selection, execution of schemes and field water testing for which the district has been appreciated by the government of India.

In Una district, 15 schemes costing Rs 196 crore are being implemented. The cent per cent target of providing functional tap connections to all 115,949 houses in the district has been achieved.

“In the assessment done by the government of India in 2020-21, Himachal Pradesh has been rated as the best in overall efficiency in quantity and quality of potable water available at the consumer level,” the statement claimed.

“The availability of quality water supply at consumer level has improved the standard of living and health conditions. The dependence of water from natural sources has reduced, which has saved people’s time and they are now using their time to earn their livelihood,” it said.

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