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Eureka Forbes rural water supply initiative

The mission of Rural Drinking Water Supply programme under the Ministry of Rural Development aims at providing safe drinking water in adequate quantity to all rural habitation in the country, including rural schools and anganwadis. Due to a variety of factors, quality of drinking water is likely to deteriorate when it actually reaches the consumption point, especially in the sensitive areas like schools.

The Ministry, through the Department of Drinking Water Supply (DDWS), has taken initiatives to add value and quality to its existing rural drinking water supply programme through project “Jalmani” which would ensure that children are provided adequate, safe and pure drinking water.

The Government of India had earmarked Rs200 crore in the 2008-09 budget to cover one lakh schools across the country for providing stand alone purification system. In order to decide on the technology options, the department had constituted a High Level Technical Committee (HLTC) in March 2008 with various Government technical institutions as members. However, the responsibility of implementing the scheme lies with the various state governments through their respective departments.

Forbes Pro Water Solutions, a division of Eureka Forbes Limited, had been invited by the HLTC to actively participate and make the Jalmani project a success. An in-depth study of the conditions in rural schools was undertaken and customised products as per HLTC’s specifications were designed and offered to various state governments.

Challenges faced

The project implementation involved co-ordination with diverse departments of the state government such as Directorate of Public Instructions, the Zilla Panchayat, the Panchayat Raj Engineering Department and the school staff.

• Location of schools warranted transporting the machines by walk as adequate connectivity by road was difficult.

• Lack of preparedness on the part of the schools for installation of the Stand Alone Water Purification System as per the requirements of the concerned ordering agency.

• Lack of power supply hampered installation and commissioning activity.

• Providing service for a period of five years after installation

Task accomplishment

• Formation of dedicated team transcending all functions.

• Manufacturing of Stand Alone Water Purification Systems (SAWPS) in a time bound manner to adhere to tight delivery schedules.

• Use of third party logistics / in house logistics for delivery.

• Undertaking of installation and commissioning by a dedicated team of technicians.

• Liaison with ordering agencies to communicate the progress of project.

Eureka Forbes has installed over 3000 units – Karnataka:1700, Uttarakhand: 350, West Bengal: 40 and Maharashtra: 965.

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