Department of Drinking Water and Sanitation, Ministry of Jal Shakti launched Jal Shakti Abhiyan (JSA)-I, in 1592 blocks out of 2836 blocks in 256 water stressed districts of the country in two phases last year (1 July to 30 September and from 1 October to 30 November 2019) as a time bound campaign intended to improve water availability in these blocks. Under Jal Shakti Abhiyan-I, officers, groundwater experts and scientists from the Government of India have worked with State and District officials in these water-stressed districts of the country to promote water conservation and water resource management by focusing on accelerated implementation of five target interventions, viz, water conservation & rainwater harvesting, renovation of traditional and other water bodies/tanks, reuse and recharge of bore wells, water shed development and intensive afforestation. With this campaign, huge awareness has been generated and various stakeholders, viz. government department, agencies, NGOs, officials, Panchayats, individuals, etc. have started taking steps for water conservation.
Water being a State subject, steps for augmentation, conservation and efficient management of water resources are primarily undertaken by the respective State Governments. Central Government augments the efforts of the State Governments by providing technical and financial assistance to them through various schemes and programs. Ministry of Jal Shakti has been implementing various schemes and programs like Atal Bhujal Yojana (Atal Jal), National Aquifer Mapping and Management (NAQUIM) Program, Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana – Accredited Irrigation Benefit Program (PMKSY-AIBP), Command Area Development & Water Management (CADWM) Program, Surface Minor Irrigation and Repair Renovation & Restoration of water bodies (a part of PMKSY- Har Khet Ko Pani) etc and campaigns like “Catch the Rain” and “Sahi Fasal” with people’s/farmers’ active participation for water conservation and asset creation.
The “Catch The Rain” campaign launched by National Water Mission is an awareness generation program nudging the state governments and stakeholders to take up rain water harvesting structures appropriate to the soil-substrata and climatic conditions, with active participation of people. In collaboration with the “Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan” a massive awareness drive has been launched on 21 December 2020 involving Youth Clubs in 623 districts. Apart from this National Water Mission has been holding seminars, workshops, monthly “Water Talks” and “Water Tech talks” and weekly webinars “Catch the Rain: Dialogues with DMs” with selected District Magistrates/District Collectors/Deputy Commissioners to spread awareness. Department of Rural Development is also taking up water conservation works in drought prone areas of the country in all States/UTs under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) as per demand and following due process under the scheme.
This information was given by the Minister of State for Jal Shakti & Social Justice and Empowerment Shri Rattan Lal Kataria in Lok Sabha today.