With over 300 rivers on the verge of extinction in Madhya Pradesh, the Kamal Nath government has decided to revive and save 40 rivers and has also decided to implement the ”Right to Water Act” to ensure availability of water to every person.
According to sources, these 40 rivers flow in 36 districts like Chhindwara, Neemuch, Agar-Malwa, Alirajpur, Chhatarpur, Seoni, Shahdol and Sheopur.
While the draft ”Right to Water Act” is being finalised, as part of efforts to conserve water, the campaign to promote rain and ground water conservation is also being intensified. While Water Resources, Public Health Engineering and Agriculture Departments have been asked to steer the campaign, important roles have been envisioned for the Panchayat and Rural Development Department.
“An action plan has been prepared to revive the traditional water sources. As far as rivers are concerned, water flows only for four months during the monsoon. The ”River Revitalisation” programme has been prepared to sustain this flow throughout the year,” Panchayat and Rural Development Minister Kamleshwar Patel said.
According to the plan, all water conservation works will be done under MGNREGA. This will provide employment to villagers. Ponds and dams will be constructed under the scheme.
Ram Babu Tiwari, a Allahabad University research student working on water conservation in Bundelkhand, said, “The loss of rivers and sustainable water structures are major causes of water crisis. Earlier Bundelkhand had thousands of ponds and wells. The loss of these natural systems triggered a major crisis in the area.