In a yet another pro-active move, Himachal Pradesh Governor, Acharya Devvrat is all set to launch literacy campaign for water conservation in the hill state with technical advice from the ‘water man’ of Rajasthan, Rajinder Singh on March 9.
“Magsaysay award winner for reviving water resources in arid eastern regions, Rajinder Singh will interact with the officials and experts of agriculture and horticulture, farmers and NGOs at Raj Bhawan to give them insight on water conservation in continuity in a one day workshop,” Himachal Governor told The Statesman here on Wednesday.
Unlike his predecessors, Devvrat is known for his active participation in the development process in his own ways. He is in the midst of promoting organic farming on the lines of Sikkim and is propagating indigenous breed of cows in the hill state by even educating the experts in the field.
“The water availability is going to be a big issue for coming generations. We need to save and conserved water on priority,” he said.
He said Himachal Pradesh had abundant water flowing in rivers, rivulets and nullahs, but the scientific intervention to conserve it is lacking. The rain water too is not harvested in the hill state in the manner it should be.
“The campaign is aimed at creating awareness among people on the issue and then go in for construction of check dams on rivulets and nullahs and revive village ponds and other water bodies across the state to re-charge ground water,” Devvrat said.
“Our slogan is ‘daudtey paani ko chalna sikhana hai…chaltey paani ko rokna hai’. The check dams are important to break the flow of water in monsoons they allow the water to seep into soil for recharging,”the Governor added.
He said villagers would be involved in the process and schemes like Mahatama Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MNREGA) could also be used to engage people in the construction of check dams and ponds.
In the last decade, the Hamirpur district of Himachal Pradesh had done major work on water conservation, which had led to the rise in the water table in the area. “We will replicate the work done in Hamirpur in other districts also,” the Governor said. He said in the cities like Shimla, the state government needs to make water harvesting mandatory in every building so that the water scarcity is not felt in routine.
The water conservation expert, Rajinder Singh, it is pertinent to mention, was recently invited by the Governor for ideas, wherein he (Singh) had expressed concern over continuous soil erosion in the state and depletion of ground water level.
He had said that that Himachal Pradesh was discharging more water than recharging the timeless water sources like lakes, dams and rivers.