Meghalaya receives 63 billion cubic litres of water annually through rainfall, which is considered very high. Chief Minister Conrad Sangma said on Wednesday. However, the state is able to retain only 1 billion cubic litres of water, he added.
“Meghalaya is one of the wettest places on earth. We receive about 63 billion cubic litres of water annually, of which 31 billion cubic litres flow to Bangladesh and 31 billion cubic litres flow to Assam,” he said while launching the Meghalaya Water Smart Kid campaign, an
initiative under Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM) to create awareness about water conservation amongst the children.
CM Sangma then said that to address the issue of water conservation and sustainability, the State Government has taken various interventions, which are supported by externally aided projects (EAPs) and the Ministry of Jal Shakti, Government of India.
He informed that 1000 water reservoirs are being constructed across the state, so as to harness the water and increase the groundwater table through different soil rejuvenation projects. “We are making concerted efforts to harness water as it is imperative to ensure
sustainability and rejuvenation of our water sources”, he added.
He informed that the Public Health Engineering (PHE) Department has received huge funding under JJM and EAPs, which is close to around 8000 cr. “We have a challenge ahead of us but our officials have been working tirelessly to achieve the targets in ensuring that water is made available to every household in the state”, he said.
The Chief Minister also informed that under JJM, the State has been awarded as “best
performer” by the Ministry of Jal Shakti with additional incentives sanctioned. He said that the State has completed over 4 lakh household fixed water connections and by March 2024, the target of 6 lakh will be completed.
“In 2019, media and other stakeholders ridiculed the government for poor coverage under JJM, however, we took it as a challenge and ensured that from 45,000 household connections, we managed to increase it to 4 lakh plus households”, he said, while informing on challenges associated with terrain for laying of pipe connection, to identifying water sources and creation of reservoirs.