Friday, September 20, 2019

Water Crises in India; Water Resource Management is the Key

By Sriram Vedire,
Adviser to Ministry of Jal Shakti, Government of India

The world is facing the worst water crisis, including the Indian States with acute drought, waterlogging and sudden floods. It is imperative for every state to take necessary steps to resolve issues surrounding water resource management. NITI AYOG released the Composite Water Management Index (CWMI) in June 2018 to put forth the prevailing water crisis squarely in the centre of the public policy space. Presenting the efforts made by creating  about 4 lakh water harvesting structures and the encouraging results, a book entitled ‘A distinctive Water Management Story – The Rajasthan Way’ authored by Mr. Sriram Vedire, Adviser to Ministry of Jal Shakti, Government of India, was launched today at Dr. BR Ambedkar International Centre. The book was released at a high profile event graced by Shri Om Birla, Hon’ble Speaker, Lok Sabha; Shri Prakash Javedkar, Hon’ble Minister of Environment, Forest, Climate Change, I&B, GoI; Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, Hon’ble Minister of Jal Shakti, GoI; Shri G Kishan Reddy, Hon’ble MoS (Home), GoI; and Shri Sanjay Dhotre,  Hon’ble MoS (HRD), GoI.

This book elucidates the efforts taken by the State of Rajasthan under the supervision and guidance of Mr. Sriram Vedire, a water deprived state for their water resource management, processes and the use of technology for scientific planning. The book throws light on all aspects involved in this greatest challenge and elaborates the steps taken in planning, execution, monitoring and review processes.

While launching his book Mr. Sriram Vedire said, “I am honoured and overwhelmed to launch my 5th book in the presence of such honourable and inspiring personalities. I have tried to bring in the key areas of work on water resource management that we have executed in the State of Rajasthan during the past five years. The enormous results seen in providing water to the poorest of poor in the remotest village in Rajasthan has been one of the most cherishing moments of my life both professionally and personally.”

“The thought behind penning down all the innovative planning and execution practices on effective utilization and management of water resources that we implemented in Rajasthan is with the aim of guiding other states with ideas and effective processes to utilize existing water resources”, he added.

In the book, the author has also addressed the acute shortage of water in the desert state of Rajasthan and how they implemented pioneering solutions in water management by establishing a River Basin & Water Resources Planning Authority with statutory powers to plan water resources management with “River Basin” as a unit. The planning included attacking the problem from both micro and macro levels of planning. Taking river basin as a unit in planning both these micro level (bottom up approach) and macro level (top down approach) are covered in the chapter “Water Management with River Basin as a unit of planning” in the book.

The book is a fine specimen of academic writing, management and practical experience on critical issues States are facing in today’s world. The author’s previous books have been lauded by eminent personalities, especially those who have been catalysts of change in the field of water management programs and sustainable development. The book launch promised an evening of high-level deliberations

The Author, also the Chairman of Rajasthan River Basin & Water Resources Planning Authority, Government of India, has been actively involved in many other water conservation programs like interlinking of Rivers and Urban Water Management, ground water recharge, water harvesting, cleaning of River Ganga to name a few.

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