Water being a State subject, initiatives on sustainable water management including conservation and water harvesting in the Country is primarily States’ responsibility.
However, the important measures are taken by the Central Government for conservation, management of groundwater and effective implementation of rainwater harvesting in the country.
What are various steps taken by the central government for ground management?
Steps taken by the Central Government to control water depletion and promote rainwater harvesting/conservation.
PM has written letter to all sarpanches regarding the importance of water conservation and harvesting and exhorted them to adopt all appropriate measures to make water conservation a mass movement.
Creation of a new Ministry of Jal Shakti for dealing with all matters relating to water at one place in an integrated manner.
The National Water Policy (2012) advocates rainwater harvesting and conservation of water
Centre has circulated a Model Bill to all the States/UTs to enable them to enact suitable groundwater legislation for its regulation and development, which includes provision of rainwater harvesting.
Central Ground Water Authority (CGWA) has issued directions under Section 5 of The Environment Protection Act, 1986 for mandatory Rain Water Harvesting / Roof Top Rain Water Harvesting for all target areas in the Country including UTs.
Besides, CGWB has taken up Aquifer Mapping and Management programme during the 12th Plan
Centre has instituted National Water Awards to incentivise good practices in water conservation and groundwater recharge. Centre is organizing Mass awareness programmes to promote rainwater harvesting and artificial recharge to groundwater.
Department of Land Resources is currently implementing 8214 watershed development projects in 28 States covering an area of about 39.07 million ha. under the Watershed Development Component (WDC) of the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana (PMKSY)
Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs has released Model Building Bye-laws, 2016 which recommends Rainwater Harvesting for all types of Building with plot size 100 sq.m or more.
Government of India has approved Atal Bhujal Yojana (Atal Jal), a Central Sector Scheme, for sustainable management of groundwater resources with community participation in water-stressed blocks of Gujarat, Haryana, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh.
What are notable state government efforts for sustainable groundwater management?
A number of States have done notable work in the field of water conservation/harvesting. Of these, mention can be made of
1. Mukhyamantri Jal Swavlamban Abhiyan in Rajasthan
2. Jalyukt Shibar in Maharashtra,
3. Sujalam Sufalam Abhiyan in Gujarat,
4. Mission Kakatiya in Telangana,
5. Neeru Chettu in Andhra Pradesh,
6. Jal Jeevan Hariyali in Bihar,
7. Jal Hi Jeevan in Haryana among others.