The Jal Shakti’s tableau “Jal Jeevan Mission: Changing Lives” on Republic Day nicely displayed how at an altitude of more than 13,000 ft in harsh winter, Jal Jeevan Mission is bringing ease and improving quality of life of people of Ladakh by providing clean tap water to their homes.
There, in winters the maximum temperature during the day remains sub-zero and night temperature falls to -20 degree Celsius. During extreme winter conditions, providing clean tap water at the doorstep is very challenging as water sources get frozen and supply lines become inoperative, water pipes get frozen and burst.
Ladakh has the lowest population density in the country (2.8 person/ sq. km.), villages are scattered and rain fall is scarce. It remains cut off from the rest of country for few months in a year due to closure of passes during winters.
This affects the supply of materials badly. Further, most of the water sources are in inaccessible areas, in many areas of Ladakh the water bodies freeze in winters, a lot of labour is required for construction and help of animals & helicopters is taken to lift and transport the material.
Due to freezing temperatures, in place of regular GI pipe, HDPE pipes are used and main supply lines are laid below frost line. Wherever pipes come above the frost line, these are encased in 4” dm of glass wool, wood, aluminium jacketing for insulation. Solar power plays an integral part in the water supply chain and ensures continuous flow of water in the pipeline. There are technical challenges as well to draw water from frozen water sources.
In such areas where people were forced to dig ice and drink it after melting, now getting clean tap water in the comfort of their homes, schools and anganwadis. Not only that, through sensor based IoT system they know live data about quantity, quality and monitoring of the water supplied. Women in villages have been trained to test the quality of water using Field Test Kits (FTKs)
In the tableau, local women are shown conducting water quality test by using Field Test Kits (FTKs). JJM has trained more than 8.6 lakh women so far in ensuring clean tap water to homes with the help of FTKs. Water testing laboratories in the country are now open for public to get their drinking water tested.
A digital board displaying live temperature and real time data about water supply, chlorination etc. and progress of the Mission is also presented.