PM Modi exhorts people to conserve water

PM Modi exhorts people to conserve water

Prime Minister Narendra Modi (AFP File Photo)

With the country witnessing growing scarcity of water due to fall in the water level of major reservoirs and river basins, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday made a strong pitch for Janbhagidari (people's participation), appealing people to join hands to save water by adopting water conservation methods.

Addressing the nation through his first Mann Ki Baat radio talk after coming at the helm of affairs for the second consecutive term, he also urged “the luminaries” from different walks of life “to lead” promotion of water conservation in the country through “innovative” campaigns to “wake up and unite” the society to save water.

“Just 8% of the water received from rains in the entire year is harvested in our country. Now the time has come to find a solution to this problem. We can solve this predicament by the participation of the people, Janbhagidari and their power. Just like cleanliness drive has been given the shape of a mass movement by the countrymen, let's also start a mass movement for water conservation,” the Prime Minister said.

A collective effort begets “massive positive results,” he added.

The Prime Minister said that creation of the new Jalashakti Ministry “will allow faster decision-making on all subjects related to water.”

The Prime Minister urged the people to share information on various traditional methods that have been in use over the centuries in the country for conserving water.

He asked people to share with the government the information about the groups of people and non-government organisations who have been making “significant contributions” towards water conservation “in order to create an intensive database of individuals and organizations dedicated to water preservation.”

“A few days ago, I wrote letters to the Sarpanchs and Gram Pradhans across the country, suggesting them to sit and discuss the resolution to the problem with the villagers. I am happy that they have shown exemplary enthusiasm on this front,” the Prime Minister said.

The growing water crisis in the country has become a major concern with the fall in the water level of many reservoirs and river basins being recorded each year.

A recent report of the NITI Ayog indicates that as many as 21 major cities are poised to run out of groundwater next year.

Groundwater makes up 40% of the country's water supply but it has been steadily depleting for years. Other sources of water are also running dry. Almost two-thirds of India's reservoirs are running below normal water levels, the Central Water Commission said in June.

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