NEW DELHI: The Centre has planned an extensive water conservation programme for drought prone areas of Bundelkhand (Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh), Marathwada (Maharashtra) and Kalahandi, Bolangir and Koraput (KBK) region of Odisha. The programme will formally be launched by the Union water resources minister Uma Bharti at Bandri, Sagar in Madhya Pradesh on Friday.
The three regions to be covered under it are among the most parched regions of the country. Idea of this plan is to give emphasis on artificial groundwater recharge and conservation and management of available resources so that every farm land can get assured supply of water.
The water conservation and management will be done through correcting systemic deficiencies in existing canal network for bridging the gap between Irrigation Potential Created (IPC) and Irrigation Potential Utilised (IPU) and improving water use efficiency in irrigation.
Bharti said her ministry has taken up new initiatives under the National Groundwater Management Improvement Schemes (NGMIS) with an objective to effectively improve groundwater conditions in stressed blocks. “The ministry has prepared a master plan for artificial recharge of groundwater in Bundelkhand region”, she said.
As part of groundwater exploration, 234 wells are proposed to be constructed in five districts of Bundelkhand – Banda, Hamirpur, Jalaun, Chitrakoot and Mahoba – in Uttar Pradesh. Similarly, another 259 wells will be constructed in six districts of the region in Madhya Pradesh.
Under the water conservation programme for Bundelkhand, the ministry has identified around 1,100 percolation tanks, 14,000 small check dams/nala bunds and 7200 recharge pits/shafts in UP and around 2,000 percolation tanks, 55,000 small check dams/nala bunds and 17,000 recharge shafts in MP.
Seven schemes with target to bridge a gap of 53,365 hectare between IPC and IPU will be implemented in Marathwada region of Maharashtra.The schemes, costing Rs 250 crore, will benefit Aurangabad, Latur, Nanded, Prabhani, Nanded, Solapur and Osmanabad districts. An area of 3,727 sq.km in Marathwada is proposed to be covered under the NGMIS, involving an expenditure approximate of Rs 380 crore.
In Kalahandi, Bolangir and Koraput (KBK) region of Odisha, nine projects with target to bridge a gap of nearly 68,000 hectare between IPC and IPU have been proposed. The scheme will benefit Malkangiri, Bolangir, Nuapada, Rayagada, Kalahandi and Bargarh districts of the region.