State Responsibility in the Drinking Water Sector: An Overview of the Indian Scenario

The paper discusses the existing legal and policy framework for drinking water in the Indian environment. The paper proceeds on the premise that the socio-legal setting of India vests an obligation on the part of the State to provide drinking water to its population, both rural and urban. This fundamental objective is met by a combination of state enactments and policy responses from the center. However, a language of decentralization is introduced in the later years in the drinking water sector to facilitate better access to clean drinking water. It is pertinent to see whether the nature of decentralization envisaged and being in the implementation level forms an appropriate strategy to fulfill the obligation of the State towards the population .