Special Correspondent

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan said here on Thursday that widespread knowledge about the precarious water situation in the State was essential if the State were to face the challenges in water management in the coming days.

Inaugurating a gathering of Ministers, MLAs and officials organised at the Legislature complex here on Thursday for the release of the approach paper on water conservation, the Chief Minister said the State was faced with a serious crisis on the water front on account of the poor water literacy among the large masses of people. Rampant conversion of paddy fields, neglect of water bodies across the State and unbridled sand quarrying were all contributing to the water crisis in the State, he said.

Mr. Achuthanandan pointed out that the State had suffered loss of property and agricultural produce estimated at Rs. 660 crore after the onset of monsoon on May 25. The proposed ‘water security’ scheme of the Water Resources Department should go a long way in ensuring that the State preserved its water resources for posterity, the Chief Minister said.