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Updated: June 15, 2010 20:23 IST

Water supply reforms for better irrigation in Rajasthan

Special Correspondent
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File picture of a Cotton plant at Gharsana in Rajasthan. Photo: Rajeev Bhatt
The Hindu File picture of a Cotton plant at Gharsana in Rajasthan. Photo: Rajeev Bhatt

The Rajasthan Government has introduced wide-ranging reforms in the supply of water from the major canal systems to farmers for irrigation after identifying the shortcomings in a recent survey and amended the procedure for providing turns for water supply till the tail-end.

According to Principal Water Resources Secretary Ram Lubhaya, Water Consumer Associations in villages will decide the turn of farmers following the issue of permanent slips to them in the command areas of Gang Canal, Bhakhra Canal and Indira Gandhi Canal.

Elsewhere in the State, the department's executive engineers will look after the work. “With the sale of agricultural land, the permanent slips will also be transferred in the buyer's name by the tehsildar,” said Mr. Lubhaya here.

The three canal systems had been strengthened in accordance with their master plans during the past few months, pointed out Mr. Lubhaya. He said the notification for amendment in the procedure for water supply had been issued while taking care that farmers do not have to repeatedly visit the department's offices.

The repairing of distributaries on a large scale would ensure supply of water till the tail-end of all canals, he added.

“Unequal and erratic distribution of water among farmers was earlier reported because of defects in 80 per cent of the distributaries of Gang and Bhakhra Canals and 45 per cent of Indira Gandhi Canal. This led to some of the distributaries getting more than the allotted quantity of water,” said Mr. Lubhaya.

The amended rules provide that any alteration in the canal structure, including its outlets, would be done only with the written consent of the State Government.

Mr. Lubhaya said this authority was earlier vested in the local water resources officers.


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