Central government has approved PM Modi Atal Jal Yojana 2020 to manage groundwater resources. This Atal Bhujal Scheme would help in conserving water with an outlay of Rs. 6,000 crore. The need to start Atal Bhoojal Yojna is felt after 22% of assessed blocks in the country faces acute shortage of water. This scheme will ensure critical management of resources of water through multiple activities.
Atal Bhujal Yojana 2020 will be implemented in 8,350 water stressed villages across 7 states. The name of states covered under Atal Jal Yojana 2020 are Gujarat, Haryana, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh. This scheme would be implemented over a period of 5 years i.e from 2020-21 to 2024-25.
PM Atal Bhujal Scheme envisages active participation of communities in various activities to take care of demand side (through efficient use of water resources) management of water resources instead of only managing supply side (making available) of resources.
PM Modi Atal Jal Yojana 2020 to Manage Bhujal
The activities under Atal Bhujal Yojana will include formation of water user associations, monitoring and disseminating groundwater data. Even the PM Modi Atal Jal Yojana 2020 will involve water budgeting, preparation and implementation of gram panchayat-wise water security plans. Moreover, central govt. will start awareness programmes related to sustainable groundwater management.
The implementation of Atal Jal Yojana 2020 is expected to benefit nearly 8,350 gram panchayats in 78 districts of these 7 states. The Atal Bhujal Scheme will promote panchayat led groundwater management and behavioural change with primary focus on demand side management. Out of the total allotment of Rs. 6,000 crore, 50% of amount shall be in the form of World Bank loan and be repaid by the central government.
The remaining 50% assistance shall be through central assistance from regular budgetary support. The entire World Bank’s loan component and central assistance shall be passed on to the states as grants. The latest assessment of groundwater situation by Central Ground Water Board (CGWB) shows 1,499 (nearly 22%) out of 6,881 assessed units (blocks / mandals / taluks) in 2017 came under over-exploited and critical categories taken together.
This means that the annual extraction of groundwater in those assessed units are more than annual replenishment (recharge). Currently, ground water contributes to 65% of total irrigated area of India and 85% of rural drinking water supply. The limited groundwater resources in the country are under threat due to increasing demands of growing population, urbanization and industrialisation.
As agricultural sector consumes substantial amount of water for irrigation, focus would be on water use efficiency. The govt. will now adopt improved cropping pattern and shift towards less water consuming crops in stressed regions) in this sector. Atal Jal Yojana 2020 aims to realize the vision of doubling farmers income, promote equitable use of groundwater resources and induce behavioural change at community level.