“Nal Se Jal”: SPML Infra Limited to play key role in developing water infrastructure in India

Indian water management company SPML Infra Limited will play a key role in the development of sustainable water infrastructure to realise the vision of “Nal Se Jal”, or “Water from Tap”. This ambitious scheme announced by finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman aims to provide piped water connection to every household in India by 2024. Given that this scheme includes connecting about 140 million remaining rural and urban households in five years, it is likely to be a challenging task.

The water resources in India are under tremendous pressure as the availability of safe drinking water is not sufficient to cater to population demand, and the rate of groundwater withdrawal is extremely high as compared to available supplies. The effect of expanding cities will see the demand for fresh water supply rising exponentially and with limited resources; India may become a water starved nation.

Over-exploitation of groundwater, failure to recharge aquifers, reduction in catchment capacities due to uncontrolled urbanisation and no reuse facility for treated wastewater are all causes for the precarious tilt in the water balance. If the present rate of groundwater depletion persists, India will have only 22 per cent of the present daily per capita water available by 2050, possibly forcing the country to import water. The other prominent challenge being faced by water sector is the ageing infrastructure of distribution system. Water utilities in India are faced with the crucial need to address these challenges and revamping of infrastructure on priority for the economic, social, and environmental implications.

The government has placed a well thought plan of providing drinking water facility to every household of the country that will help to cater the urgent need to develop adequate water infrastructure. The “Nal Se Jal” scheme will lead to a huge investment in water infrastructure development in the country that will help in addressing the issues of drinking water supply.

Subhash Sethi, Chairman of SPML Infra Limited

SPML Infra Limited chairman Subhash Sethi said: “With ever-reducing water sources and increasing demand complexities, it is essential that we rework on our priorities towards drinking water supply and resource development. The newly formed Jal Shakti Ministry is on the mission to provide clean drinking water to every household in the country and has been allocated good budget to ensure piped water supply under the Jal Jeevan Mission.

Our expertise in laying over 10,000 kilometres of water pipeline, construction and erection of high value pumping stations along with large number of urban and rural water supply projects will help us in executing water supply projects with precision and speed required to complete the mammoth task of connecting all households with piped water supply in next five years.

Considering the niche position we have created for ourselves; we intend to use it to expand our footprints in water projects. We are looking forward to continue our association with government ministries, municipalities and other implementing agencies to receive and execute new projects in water supply segment with integrated strengths of engineering, process technology and project management.”