In India, as in many other developing countries, urban water supply and sanitation services are facing a major crisis. This crisis is aggravated by the pattern of urban growth: city dwellers will soon comprise one-third of the total Indian population,1 as opposed to only 10 percent at Independence. There will be a real challenge over the coming years in bridging the gap between demand and supply, as cities constitute the “motor” of future economic growth. However, a poorly maintained infrastructure, intermittent supply, low pressure, water contamination, waste, leakage, budget deficits, and excessively low rates, etc. have been the norm in most cities. Consequently, the objective of achieving universal coverage, set out in the ninth five-year plan (1997-2002), appears to be very optimistic.