Tata Swach: The World’s Cheapest Water Purifier

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A UN report on water conservation in 2014 suggested that by 2025, nearly 3.4 billion people around the world would be living in “waterscarce” countries and the situation would become grim in the next 25 years. The report further stated that due to its unique geographical position, India would face the brunt of the crisis and would be at the center of this conflict.

Two studies, ‘Capturing Synergies Between Water Conservation & Carbon Dioxide Emissions in the Power Sector’ and ‘A Clash of Competing Necessities’ published by researchers from Denmark’s Aarhus University, Vermont Law School & CNA Corporation, a non-profit research and analysis organization, revealed that the world would face an “insurmountable water crisis” by 2040 if it did not move away from water-intensive power production. It further stated that countries like India, along with China, France, and the US, would have no drinking water by 2040 if consumption of water continued at the current pace.

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The development of Swach could be traced to the 1980s when a professor from IIT Kanpur, P C Kapoor, used rice husk ash (RHA), to filter bacteria from water. Later on, he joined TRDDC as a consultant. Kapoor with this team developed filters named as ‘Sujal’ using RHA cement and pebbles. RHA comprised 80-85% of activated silica , which facilitated the entrapping of pathogenic bacteria, and 5% activated carbon that helped in removal of color and odor from the water. Sujal was able to successfully remove the odor, color, and particulate matter from impure water...


Tata Swach, the water purifier, delivered safe drinking water at a new market benchmark of Rs.30 per month for a family of five. It was user-friendly and affordable and did not require electricity, boiling, or running water to operate. It was priced at Rs.999 and had a capacity of 18 liters. The replaceable filter, which automatically stopped water supply after its useful life, was priced at Rs.249 and could be used to purify 3,000 liters of water...


Tata Swach, apart being a commercial product, was distributed as a part of the Tata Group’s CSR activity. On January 30, 2011, Tata Chemicals with the US-based public charity, Hawaii Children's Foundation, distributed one hundred Tata Swach purifiers in the villages and primary schools of Babrala, Uttar Pradesh, northern India...


According to “India Water Purifier Market Outlook, 2021”, India’s water purifier market had grown at a CAGR of 21.24% between 2009 and 2015. The Tata Group was one of the contributors to the growth in the water purifier market...


Exhibit I: List of Awards

Exhibit II:Design and Working of Tata Swach Purifier

Exhibit III:Product Variants of Tata Swach