The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi launched the ‘Jal Shakti Abhiyan: Catch the Rain’ campaign on World Water Day i.e today via video conferencing. A Memorandum of Agreement was signed between the Union Minister of Jal Shakti and the Chief Ministers of Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh to implement the Ken Betwa Link Project, the first project of the National Perspective Plan for interlinking of rivers, in the presence of the Prime Minister. The Prime Minister also interacted with sarpanches and ward panchayats in Rajasthan, Uttarakhand, Karnataka, Maharashtra, and Gujarat.
The campaign with the tagline “Catch the rain, where it falls, when it falls is to push states and stakeholders to create proper Rain Water Harvesting Structures (RWHS) suitable to climatic conditions. Under this campaign, drives to make check dams, water harvesting pits, rooftop RWHS, etc; removal of encroachments and de-silting of tanks to increase their storage capacity; removal of obstructions in the channels which bring water to them from the catchment areas, etc; repairs to step-wells and using defunct bore-wells and unused wells to put water back to aquifers, etc are to be taken up with the active participation of people.
Rain Water Harvesting (RWH) a technique of collection and storage of Rainwater at the surface or in the sub-surface aquifer, before it is lost a surface Nina fit will be undertaken across the country, in both rural and urban areas. It will be implemented from March to November 2021 – premonsoon and monsoon period. The campaign aims to take water conservation at the grass-roots level through people’s participation.
During the period MGNREGA funds will be spent on rainwater conservation. Rain Centres in each district, as a technical guidance centre to al All water bodies in the districts are to be enumerated, and removed. Efforts should be made so that all buildings in the district should have rooftop RWHS and that the maximum quantity of rainwater falling in any compound should be impounded within the compound itself. The basic aim should be that No or only limited will water to flow out of the compound. This will help in improving soil moisture and the ground water table. In urban areas it will reduce water gushing onto roads, damaging them, and will prevent urban flooding.