In a big success for India’s efforts to tackle the water crisis in rural areas , over 40,000 ‘Amrit Sarovars’ have been constructed across the country in less than a year after the project was launched.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had launched ‘Mission Amrit Sarovar’ on 24 April last year with the target to construct and rejuvenate at least 75 Amrit sarovars in each district across the country.
The initiative was launched with the objective to “overcome the water crisis in rural areas of the country”, according to the Union Rural Development Ministry.
“A target of construction of 50,000 Amrit Sarovars was set to be completed by 15 August 2023. Within a short span of 11 months, so far, more than 40,000 Amrit Sarovars have been constructed, which constitutes 80 per cent of the total target,” the Rural Development Ministry said on Friday (31 March).
According to the ministry, the core of the mission has been people’s participation at all levels through “Jan Bhagidari”.
User groups have been formed for each Amrit Sarovar, with 54,088 groups involved in the feasibility assessment, execution, and utilisation of the Sarovars.
Mission Amrit Sarovar is also helping boost rural livelihoods as completed Sarovars have been identified for activities like irrigation, fisheries, duckery, cultivation of water chestnut, and animal husbandry, according to the ministry.
Currently, 66 per cent of user groups are engaged in agriculture, 21 per cent in fisheries, 6 per cent in water chestnut and lotus cultivation, and 7 per cent in animal husbandry, as per the ministry.
“‘Whole of Government’ approach is the soul of this Mission, wherein six Central Ministries, namely Ministry of Rural Development together with Ministry of Railways, Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, Ministry of Jal Shakti, Ministry of Panchayati Raj, Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, are operational in convergence with technical organizations, namely Bhaskaracharya National Institute of Space Applications and Geo-Informatics (BISAG-N), and all the States/UTs Governments,” the ministry said.
The highlight of this convergence is that the Ministry of Railway and Ministry of Road Transport and Highways are using the excavated soil/silt for infrastructure projects in the vicinity of the demarcated Amrit Sarovar sites, it said.
The Mission Amrit Sarovar also aims qualitative implementation and development of Amrit Sarovar as a hub of local community activities, according to the ministry