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Karnataka among 7 states selected for groundwater project

Ajith Athrady, March 10, 2017, New Delhi, DHNS 0:56 IST
Karnataka is among seven states selected by the Union Water Resources Ministry for the World Bank-aided National Groundwater Management Improvement Scheme (NGMIS) on a pilot basis.

The ministry selected Karnataka, Gujarat, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh based on an alarming drop in the groundwater table due to over exploitation.

NGMIS envisages sustainable groundwater management with people’s participation, an official in the Ministry told DH.

The entire project costs around Rs 6,000 crore and will be implemented over a period of six years, said the official.

The seven states identified for the project represent 25% of the overexploited blocks in the country.

According to the ministry, in India, 245 billion cubic metres of goundwater is drawn every year. This represents about 25% of the total global groundwater drawn. With the over 80% of rural and urban domestic water supplies in India depending on groundwater, the government is working on its better management for socioeconomic development, said the official.

As part of its efforts to rejuvenate water sources, the ministry has already started mapping ground water where there is highest exploitation. The mapping also helps understand sustainability of drawing groundwater and its contamination, said the
official.

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