New Delhi: The Centre has set a target of providing clean drinking water to all by 2024, Jal Shakti minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat said on Tuesday.

Addressing reporters at an interaction in Delhi, Shekhawat said, “We have the largest human population and livestock population and per capita availability of water is less. The per capita availability of water that we had in 1950 has reduced considerably and is about one-third of that amount whereas the populations have become three times. From 5000 litre per capita water availability that we had then, it is nearly 1400 per capita now.”

The minister also said that providing water for every household was one of the BJP's poll promises and added that the party will work towards fulfilling it. "There are over 14 crore households where we have to provide water," he said.

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The Jal Shakti ministry has been created in the second term of the Modi government. It has been made by reorganising the ministry of water resources, river development and Ganga rejuvenation, which was held by Nitin Gadkari in the previous government. The ministry of drinking water and sanitation has also been added to it.

During an election rally in Tamil Nadu, Modi, last month, assured that if voted back to power, his government would ensure the establishment of a separate Jal Shakti Ministry. "After 23 May, when the Modi government will once again assume office, there will be a separate Ministry for Jal Shakti. This Ministry will cater to many aspects relating to water," Modi had said.

"The NDA government had devoted a lot of attention to water resources. There will be a separate ministry for Jal Shakti to ensure clean water and top class irrigation water facilities for the farmers," he had added

With almost all of rural India depending on the monsoon for agricultural and domestic purposes, there is a desperate need for water management on a war footing. BJP's manifesto had also promised to set up a unified Ministry of Water to end the water woes in the country.