LAHORE - More than 40 million residents of the rural and peri-urban areas of the Punjab will have access to the safe drinking water through installation of state-of-the-art water filtration plants in 144 tehsils of 44 districts of the province.

According to a press release issued by Saaf Pani Company, the Punjab government has launched this initiative, which is aimed at providing the safe drinking water supply to the people, particularly focusing on the rural areas of the province.

In the first phase, around 80 water filtration plants are near completion to provide safe drinking water facility to over 250,000 residents of the priority tehsils of Minchanabad (District Bahawalnagar), Lodhran (District Lodhran), Hasilpur (District Bahawalpur) and Khanpur (District Rahimyar Khan).

Chief Minister Punjab is determined to serve the people of the province. Besides undertaking a host of public welfare steps, the initiative of provision of safe drinking water to the under-served communities is another feather in his cap. This programme is bound to reduce the health expenditures of the benefitting communities while they would live a healthy life while women would be able to better utilize the time they used to spend in fetching water from far off places.

“Access to safe drinking water is one of the basic human rights but there is also a need to create awareness among the benefitting communities regarding judicious use of this blessing,” says Waseem Ajmal Chaudhry, CEO of the Punjab Saaf Pani Company, which has been established as a special purpose vehicle to implement this programme.

However, greater awareness in terms of health and hygiene and use of clean containers would help improve the life expectancy in the area. Public and private participation is the need of the hour to prevent contamination of fresh water resources while water aquifers must be protected for healthy future generation.

With regard to the World Water Day, Waseem Ajmal said that this day reminds us to promote water conservation and understand its importance in various field of life including the environment, health, agriculture, etc.