From artificial intelligence to state-of-the-art infrastructure development approaches, US companies are aiming to partner with their Indian peers to accelerate innovative technologies and solutions into the Indian market. In a session on Digital Water, Dr. Ravi Kota, Minister Economic – Embassy of India, Washington said, “United States can be great allies to building India’s Digital foundation for the water sector.” Xavier Chauvet De Beauchene, Senior Water and Sanitation Specialist, International Bank for Reconstruction and Development said that the bank is very proud of all the work done in India. “Who would have thought 5 years ago that 550 million people will stop defecating in the open in India.” He added that there is a massive shift in the Indian Government’s approach from focusing only on infrastructure development to working with people and bringing about behaviour change.
He also emphasized on the importance of data. “The problem cannot be solved if it is not understood and quantified.” India has taken many endeavours in this direction also. There are many tasks at the work-in-progress stage but it’s a very good start, he observed. Mr. Ben Grumble, Secretary, Environment, Maryland stressed upon the need of nations to learn from each other’s experience. He said that “equity” of water is very essential and shared the success story of the US Clean Water Act. Interestingly, India too has launched ‘Jal Jeevan Mission’ with the goal of equal distribution of water to all. Usha Rao Monari, Senior Advisor at Blackstone Infrastructure Group and Board presenting the case of the Thames river cleaning up said that a good mix of policy and finance lead to effective cleaning of the river. It is noteworthy that the Namami Gange Mission has the advantage of these two factors – policy and finance.
The discussion was organised as a part of the 5th India Water Impact Summit by the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) and the Center for Ganga River Basin Management and Studies (cGanga).
Shri Rajiv Ranjan Mishra, Director General, NMCG said, “we are glad that our efforts are being recognised by the international fraternity now.” He attributes the success of the Namami Gange Mission to his team, volunteers, academicians and many self-help organisations who are working continuously towards the cause of cleaning Ganga and her tributaries under the vision of the Hon’ble Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi and the guidance of the Minister of Jal Shakti, Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat.