Improvement in water management index not enough, says report -Ditsa Bhattacharya

-Newsclick.in

The CWMI report, released by NITI Aayog, also pointed out that the larger economic contributors across the country have low water management scores, and this can hamper India’s economic progress.

According to the Composite Water Management Index (CWMI) 2019 released by the Niti Aayog on Friday, August 23, even though the states across the country are making progress in water management, the overall performance still remains well below what is required to adequately tackle India’s increasing water challenges.

The report said that even though India is home to approximately 17% of the world’s population, it has only 4% of the world’s freshwater resources. Proper management of these resources for this huge population is one of the most important responsibilities of the government. It said, “It is estimated that about two lakh people die every year due to inadequate water, sanitation and hygiene. In 2016, per person disease burden due to unsafe water and sanitation was 40 times higher in India than in China and 12 times higher than in Sri Lanka.”

The report also added that the country generates huge amounts of waste water annually. This, along with mismanagement of the generated waste water which leads to contamination of the groundwater, lack of liquid waste management, poor sanitation conditions and poor hygiene habits have contributed to a significant portion of the population suffering from water-borne diseases.

Of the 25 states and two union territories assessed in the CWMI, 80% have improved their water management scores in recent years, with an average improvement of more than 5.2 points. However, despite this improvement, 16 states still score less than 50 points on the index (out of 100) and fall in the low-performing category. The low-performing states, which include Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha, Delhi, Rajasthan, Nagaland and Meghalaya, collectively account for around 48% of the population, 40% of the agricultural produce, and 35% of economic output of India.

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Newsclick.in, 25 August, 2019, https://www.newsclick.in/Improvement-Water-Management-Index-Not-Enough-Report?fbclid=IwAR1adbJ7bErIGuGFFecEI4hibH5TdMAa1FpCAvfGXoJpHgnSd19yp6tS5yU

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