Convergence for Jal Shakti, resurgence of a Nation

Gajendra Singh Shekhawat
Contd from prev issue
One final observation that always gets overlooked is the impact of these schemes on a nation's GDP.
In 2006, in a joint study of WSP, ADB and UKAID, it was found that inadequate sanitation cost India Rs 2.4 Trillion or 53.8 Billion $, i.e. 6% of India’s GDP at that time.
Despite such staggering realities, not much movement happened to remedy this persistent danger till the present Government made it possible.
Today Swachh Bharat Abhiyanapart from saving 6.4% of Indian GDP gives annual benefits worth 53,000 per household and Jal Jeevan Mission will save 15 crore work days for Indian women annually as calculated by IDE.
For any other Government, it would have been considered politically astute to rest on the laurels of making India open defecation free or providing household tap connections to every household.
But the sweet sound of success be it for SBM or JJM has never been a lullaby for the Government but rather a wakeup call for the next bigger and tougher challenge.
The architect behind such conviction is the Hon’ble Prime Minister Narendra Modi who takes no shortcuts.
The Prime Minister believes in making an incision at the very roots of societal problems, and convergence is one of the tools that he often emphasises to use for the same.
It is a lesson that we have taken to heart, a lesson that acts like a map when we sometimes lose sight of what we are striving to achieve.
The writer is Union Cabinet Minister in Ministry of Jal Shakti