18 February 2017 Current Affairs: Water conservation lessons may soon become a part of the syllabus for students in Rajasthan.
The announcement was made by the Chairperson of Rajasthan River Basin and Water Resources Planning Authority, Sriram Vedire, who also added that Rajasthan is the only state in the country to integrate advanced scientific techniques in its water conservation efforts.
The proposal to include water conservation in the state’s school syllabus has already been sent to the state government. It will be implemented after it gets the approval.
Water Crisis in Rajasthan : The state normally receives an annual rainfall of 549.1 mm.
However, 16 of its 33 districts got 20-60 per cent less rainfall in 2016, which affected almost 19 districts.
So, as a result, about 91 per cent of Rajasthan’s water demand was met through extraction of groundwater, which resulted in its drastic depletion.
The remaining was drawn from seven major reservoirs, as a result of which most reservoirs, dams and hand pumps either dried up or started losing water rapidly.
To deal with the crisis, the Rajasthan state government launched a four-phased Mukhya Mantri Jal Swavlamban Abhiyan (JSY) in 2016.
The main aim of the yojana is to make all villages self-sufficient in water and also to ensure effective implementation of water harvesting and water conservation related activities in the rural areas.
The phase I of the program covered 3259 villages, benefitting a population of around 41 lakh and nearly 45 lakh livestock.
At the end of it, almost 96000 water conservation works were completed, which in total received 11,170 million cubic feet water from rains.
The yojana, in fact, received a lot of praise from South Africa and Australia and it will soon be implemented there as well.
Following the successful implementation of JSY’s first phase, the state government has launched its second phase.
Jal Swavlamban Yojna Phase-II : 4200 villages have been selected for the yojana’s second phase using advanced technology including drone cameras, way-point scientific technique and geo-tagging.
Besides villages, 66 urban cities have also been chosen to be the focus in Phase-II. These cities will be made greener.
The phase will include renovation and recharge of historic water bodies.It will also include rain water harvesting works at around 1200 government buildings.