Imperative to work on ground water replenishment: Jal Shakti Minister

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New Delhi, May 24 (IANS) Asserting that India has the highest dependency on ground water resources in the world, Union Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat on Tuesday said it is now imperative to work on ground water replenishment and asked the industry to help conserve water not just in their own sector but also in and arohnd them.

“India has the highest dependency on ground water resources in the world, much ahead of China and the US and the government is taking steps to replenish the dipping water table in the country,” he said at an interactive session on ‘Water Stewardship: Key to Sustainability in India’, organised by the PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PHDCCI) here.

“Water plays a very important role in the economic development of any country. If we examine the economic growth graph of the country, it exhibits a similar pattern with its energy and water consumption,” he added.

Shekhawat called for three important steps to be taken by the industry. First and foremost, work for replenishment of groundwater, secondly, it needs to go for recycle and reuse of water and lastly, he advised industry to encourage agriculture around the industry to save water by adopting drip irrigation.

“By using drip irrigation, even if we save 10 per cent, then we would not need to worry for next 50 years,” he said.

Earlier, the Minister awarded ‘Certificates of Appreciation’ to several private companies, Rotary Clubs and some individuals. He also released a report on ‘Ease of Doing Business for the MSME sector in India: Percolating EODB Reforms at Factory Level’.

PHD Rural Development Foundation Foundation (RDF) Chairman and former PHDCCI President Sharad Jaipuria said that when the RDF was set up in 1981, the idea was to act as a catalyst and facilitate people to achieve self-reliance and help in the integration of national schemes. “We (RDF) are working in 14 states and have undertaken initiatives, which have helped more than 6.5 lakh people,” he said.

Answering the appeal by Shekhawat to work on ground water replenishment, Jaipuria said the Foundation has helped in setting up 300 check dams in the last two years.

–IANS
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