Watershed management project a hit in Thuneri


The Integrated Watershed Management Programme (IWMP), which was introduced as a flagship project in Thuneri block panchayat to address water scarcity, has made a commendable leap in the region covering around 5,712 hectares of land.

Official figures released by the panchayat authorities say the programme has reaped success in the region by integrating 14 prominent wetlands and boosting ground water recharge within a period of four years.

In Thuneri block, the watershed management project — which mainly works on the concept of linking watersheds to form a network of waterbodies — currently covers Nadapuram, Thuneri, Vanimel, Valayam, and Chekkiyad grama panchayats. Panchayat authorities say that the number of bunds, wells, and rain water harvesting facilities constructed under the scheme in the region has gone up.

Ecological balance

“As envisaged by the Union government, we adopted all possible measures under the scheme to restore the ecological balance to harness, conserve, and develop diminishing natural resources such as soil, vegetative cover, and water,” say the panchayat authorities in their new review report. It also led to rain water harvesting, prevention of soil erosion, and above all, the recharging of ground water table to address water scarcity, they say.

Multi-cropping and introduction of diverse agro-based activities too are likely to get a boost in the project area, as farmers have already been offered special financial support for their ventures. Panchayat authorities say 303 joint liability groups of farmers are ready to take up various cost-effective farming initiatives in the region.

Currently, the project is being monitored by a four-tier management system, including the block-level coordination committee, user groups and the neighbourhood communities. Panchayat authorities attest that a major portion of the Rs.8.56-crore Central aid sanctioned for the scheme has already been utilised for achieving the targets.

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Printable version | Jan 25, 2020 4:36:14 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kozhikode/watershed-management-project-a-hit-in-thuneri/article6692708.ece

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