The UP government has constituted an ‘Orange Brigade’ to tackle plumbing issues in the rural pockets of the state to ensure hassle-free water supply under the Centre’s ambitious ‘Har Ghar Jal’ scheme.
Officials said the state government has deputed two plumbers in each gram panchayat to ensure the scheme’s efficient implementation ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.
“Under the move, plumbing-related issues will be resolved at the doorstep of villagers. In each Gram Panchayat, two youth trained in plumbing trade have been given an orange-coloured uniform and they will be available for any plumbing issues in the villages that have been provided with tap connections for clean drinking water supply,” a government spokesperson said.
On the directions of Anurag Srivastava, principal secretary Namami Gange and rural water supply department, the companies working with Jal Jivan Mission have trained over 1.16 lakh youth so far who have been posted in their own village to ensure regular supply of clean water to every household and to tackle plumbing issues.
As per the records of the UP government, so far, around 3,379 plumbers have been deployed in Azamgarh; in Sitapur, 3,199 plumbers have been deployed and the number is 2,892 in Gorakhpur. Hardoi (2,646), Gazipur (2,451), Gonda (2,415), Basti (2,370), Bareilly (2,386), Barabanki (2,299), Bahraich (2,069), Bijnor (2,246), Badaun (2,076), Deoria (2,370), Pratapgarh (2,444), Shahjahanpur (2,149), Siddharthnagar (2,272), Unnao (2,080) and Lakhimpur Kheri (2,325) are also covered by the brigade.
So far, UP has given 1,12,97,534 functional household tap water connections (FHTCs) to push Maharashtra with 1,11,22,327 FHTCs behind. Uttar Pradesh has overtaken Maharashtra to emerge as the second state in providing the highest number of water connections to rural areas, Jal Shakti department officials said. As of now, Bihar tops the list.
UP has ensured over 40,000 water connections daily reaching lakhs of rural households. The scheme’s implementation was monitored directly by chief minister Yogi Adityanath, they added.
Swatantra Dev Singh, UP’s Jal Shakti minister, said: “Plumbers deployed at village level will be guards of Jal Jivan Mission. This system has been made to ensure villagers do not face any problem in getting clean drinking water and all issues are resolved immediately. This will also give employment to the plumbers. We are also thinking about minimum assured income to plumbers.”