ISLAMABAD - The draft of National Drinking Water Policy moving from one table to another has not been finalised for the last two years. The Ministry of Environment started formulation of the National Drinking Water Policy draft in 2007 with an aim to improve the quality of life of the citizens by reducing consequence of death and illness caused by water borne diseases through provision of safe drinking water to the entire population. The overall goal of the policy is to establish a new drinking water supply system and upgrading of the existing systems in urban as well as rural areas for ensuring sustainable access of safe water to the poor at an affordable cost and in an equitable and sustainable manner by 2020. However, approval of the National Water Policy is still awaited that could lessen the miseries of citizens regarding water crisis, especially in hot summer season when they faced extreme water shortage. An official of Ministry of Environment on the condition of anonymity said, We are giving final touches to the policy draft, and will try our best to get it approved during the current year. So far, input of various stakeholders have been incorporated in policy document, but still there are so many things that will have to be discussed. He continued that now the Ministry would send it to some other relevant departments for making it more comprehensive for meeting the future challenges. As far as contents of the draft National Water Policy which have been formulated so far are concerned, it was found out that the federal, provincial and AJK governments would provide and mobilise additional financial resources and create special fund for the drinking water sector. Pakistan Council of Research in Water Resources (PCRWR) would be assigned the role of surveillance agency to undertake independent assignment of the quality of water being supplied to Islamabad capital territory and federal administrated areas. Responsibilities would be delegated to local authorities to enable them discharge their assigned functions with regard to provision of safe drinking water supply in accordance with Local Government Ordinance 2001. Policy draft also revealed that the federal and provincial environment protection agencies would act as drinking water supply regulatory authorities. Besides making a NDWP, the formulation of the national drinking water quality standards is also in pipeline of the Ministry for ensuring best quality of water. It is worth mentioning here that the council that is required to meet at least twice in a year, under the Pakistan Environmental Protection Act 1997, has remained mostly non-functional for most of its tenure and since 2004 not a single meeting of council has been held.