The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of India signed a $96.3-million loan agreement to provide safe drinking water and improve water supply and sanitation services in the state of Himachal Pradesh.
The project is aligned with the objectives of the Government of India’s Jal Jeevan Mission which aims to provide piped water to all rural households by 2024 and it will upgrade water supply infrastructure and strengthen institutional capacity to ensure safe, sustainable, and inclusive rural water supply and sanitation services.
More than 90% of the state’s rural population have access to drinking water, but the water supply infrastructure needs revamping, to result in efficient and improved service quality.
The ADB project will connect 75,800 households to the service, providing uninterrupted water supply to about 3,70,000 residents across 10 districts. To improve water supply and sanitation services, the project aims to construct 48 groundwater wells, 80 surface water intake facilities, 109 water treatment plants, 117 pumping stations, and 3,000 km of water distribution pipelines.
A pilot fecal sludge management and sanitation programme will also be implemented in Sirmaur District, benefiting 250,000 residents.
The project will strengthen the capacity of the Jal Shakti Vibhag of the Government of Himachal Pradesh and gram panchayat (local government) village water and sanitation committees. It will support the state governments water tariff policy reforms and introduce an asset management system at the state-level and district asset management plans. Key project stakeholders and community-based organisations will be trained on water management, including livelihood skills training for women self-help groups.
The Asian Development Bank is a regional development bank established on 19 December 1966, which is headquartered in the Ortigas Center located in the city of Mandaluyong, Metro Manila, Philippines. The bank also maintains 31 field offices around the world to promote social and economic development in Asia.