ADB funds Jaipur water supply system

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) will help the Indian state government of Rajasthan, to construct a new water supply system for its capital city of Jaipur through a US$ 60-million loan reallocation under the ongoing Rajasthan Urban Infrastructure Development Project.

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) will help the Indian state government of Rajasthan, to construct a new water supply system for its capital city of Jaipur through a US$ 60-million loan reallocation under the ongoing Rajasthan Urban Infrastructure Development Project.

The US$ 362-million project, backed by an ADB loan of $250 million approved in December 1998, is about 60% complete. It is improving the urban infrastructure of the state's six major cities, including the water supply system for Jaipur. The current water supply system in Jaipur is almost 100% dependent on groundwater sources, which are shrinking and losing quality from overextraction and repetitive, prolonged droughts.

A detailed aquifer study financed by a French government grant and completed in 2000, indicates that Jaipur aquifers would be severely depleted before 2010 at current extraction rates. Consequently, the state decided to construct the long-planned Bisalpur water supply system now, instead of by 2010 or so as originally planned, and sought ADB assistance to reallocate loan savings.

The US$ 60-million loan reallocation will help construct a new US$ 220-million water supply system for Jaipur from the Bisalpur dam and reservoir, located 120 km from Jaipur.

"The $120-million Phase I works including a new intake, water treatment plant, pump station, 100-km pipeline and storage reservoir will provide Jaipur with a secure water source through 2021 and beyond, thereby allowing the ground water aquifers to recharge,'' Mr. Alex Jorgensen, Principal Urban Specialist and Head of Urban Development, at ADB's India Resident Mission said in New Delhi on 13 October 2004.

The Japanese Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) supports the US$ 104 million Phase II of the Bisalpur system, with an $85-million loan. The JBIC loan will help the state rehabilitate and expand the Jaipur water distribution system. The Japanese government also provided a substantial grant to conduct leakage detection studies to improve the efficiency and overall operation of the Jaipur distribution system.

The ADB loan requires the state to rationalise water tariffs and improve revenues in the six project cities to ensure sustainability.

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