India is a country that receives as much as 4000 billion cubic meters (bcm) of average rainfall every year. However, as per the estimates, 3000 bcm is the annual requirement for the nation. Moreover, the country is home to nine major river systems. Despite being blessed with all that water, a noticeable chunk of Indian population struggles to meet their water demands every year. The polluted surface water – rivers, lakes, ponds with untreated industry waste, sewage entering the resources further intensify the woes.
Groundwater is the largest reservoir, not only holding the most water but also catering to the demands of all from agro to industries and even for domestic use. Over 80 percent of the groundwater, in India, is used for agricultural purposes. And, the lack of proper recharge of the underground reservoirs has posed a major crisis today where the groundwater levels have dwindled significantly.
The situation is a clear indication of an inefficient water management system both at the supply and the demand sides. Hence, calling India a water-scarce nation would be wrong but an apt title could be water-stressed. However, looking at the situation, the Government of India has prioritised water in their agenda and has taken noteworthy steps in a few years. From the formation of a separate Ministry of Jal Shakti to launching Jal Shakti mission, National Mission for Cleaning Ganga, to Atal Bhujal Mission for effective groundwater management with people’s participation, the government has been actively putting efforts to curb the crisis. Bringing such issues and solutions into the spotlight, eGov magazine has come up with a special issue focussing on India’s water scenario.
The special issue hosts viewpoints of the senior policymakers and domain leaders, exclusively covered for the eGov magazine. The further content will throw light on the current situation; how has the government been aiding the people to meet their daily water demands; various schemes and programmes which are being launched nationally; and how the government is directly involving people for water budgeting and management to improve the demand side. Moreover, the issue will see how India’s collaboration with foreign countries like Israel and Denmark is going to enrich its water management with better, modern and efficient interventions.