ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

IrrigationSubscribe to Irrigation

Water Resource Management of the Damodar Valley Corporation

The water resource management of the Damodar Valley Corporation project for irrigation purposes has been examined to reveal that illegal canal water utilisation has been increasing over the years. Water availability (per hectare) has been declining in the tail-end area compared to the head-reach and middle-reach areas in all seasons, which has led to differentiated agricultural productivity and crop patterns across different segments of the canal command area. Further, reduction of reservoir storage capacity and increased water demand for non-agricultural purposes have reduced the share of irrigation water and increased flood hazards in the monsoon season in the downstream area of the Damodar river.

Community Participation in Effective Water Resource Management

The initiation of the growth process in the rural economy in India, which is predominantly agriculture-based, needs optimum allocation and careful management of scarce water resources for irrigation. Using primary data, the impact of a tripartite institutional framework—comprising a non-governmental organisation, the funding agency, and the people (forming a community-based organisation)—on rural sustainability is examined. Tobit analysis is used to evaluate the impact of participation on rural sustainability. The results establish that community participation is critical in enhancing rural sustainability in terms of managing indigenous water harvesting structures like johad s.

Promoting Farm Ponds

Although the article “Problematic Uses and Practices of Farm Ponds in Maharashtra” (EPW, 21 January 2017) by Eshwer Kale rightfully highlights pertinent issues regarding the policy of promoting farm ponds and the manner in which farmers are using these structures; the solutions espoused by the author and the Maharashtra government are devoid of expertise regarding technicalities related to terrain, geography and water-pumping technologies.

Well Worth the Effort

More than 1,00,000 wells were sanctioned for construction under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act in Jharkhand during the last few years. This study evaluates the outcome of this well-construction drive through a survey of nearly 1,000 wells in 24 randomly selected gram panchayats. A majority of sanctioned wells (60% with parapet and 70% without) were completed at the time of the survey. Nearly 95% of completed wells are being utilised for irrigation, leading to a near tripling of agricultural income of those in the command area. The real rate of return from these wells in Jharkhand is estimated to be close to 6%, a respectable figure for any economic investment. However, well construction involves some out-of-pocket expenses and this investment is risky: nearly 12% of the wells were abandoned midway.

Irrigation Development and Agricultural Wages

Irrigation impacts agricultural wage trends through increased demand for labour, cropping intensity and shift in the cropping pattern from low value crops to high value crops. An attempt is made here to explore the relationship between irrigation development and wage rate of agricultural labourers using statewise cross section data pertaining to five points of time: 1972-73, 1977-78, 1983, 1987-88 and 1993-94. The results of the study show that there is a positive impact of availability of irrigation on real wages of agricultural labourers. Also irrigation helps to narrow down the difference between the statutory minimum wages and prevailing wage rates. The gender wage differential is found to be narrowing at a faster rate in the states where irrigation is highe

Change and Transformation in Rural South India

A research project on village studies to analyse the facets of rural change and transformation in the southern states noted vastly different patterns of transformation in various states, and also that the pace and directions of change differed across villages, regions and states.

Interlinking of Peninsular Rivers: A Critique

There are many aspects of the project for interlinking the peninsular rivers - conceptual, technical, environmental and economic - which need careful, detailed and objective review by independent experts and there has to be open public discussion of issues before the project is taken up for implementation. A proper review of the project must assess both its technical feasibility and whether the costs of increasing effective supply (including environmental and rehabilitation costs) by augmentation through interlinking is commensurate with the benefits by way of increased production. It must also be examined whether there is scope for improving efficiency of use beyond what is assumed, what the costs and benefits would be and how they will compare with those of interlinking

Developing Sinecures

Water User Associations in Andhra Pradesh by Jasveen Jairath; Concept Publishing Company, New Delhi (published for Centre for Economic and Social Studies, Hyderabad), 2001; pp 156; Rs 250.

Haryana : Oilseeds and Gypsum Subsidy

Gypsum was first introduced as a heavily subsidised agricultural input for reclaiming alkaline soils. Over a period of time it began to be used as a source of cheap sulphur fertiliser in oilseeds cultivation. Gypsum use is among the important reasons for the phenomenal growth of oilseeds production in Haryana. How has this change in farmers' perception of gypsum from a chemical additive to a fertiliser come about? What is the impact of extensive gypsum use on soil productivity?

Rajasthan : Stalling the March of Thar Desert

Ecological Task Forces of the Indian Army, which have made significant contributions to halting ecological degradations in several regions in the country were first set up in 1982. They probably represent the first such experiment anywhere in the world of the army taking up ecological work on a regular basis. A glimpse of the work of the Territorial Army's Eco Force in Rajasthan.

Karnataka : Incidence of Agricultural Power Subsidies

Who benefits from the large electricity subsidy provided to farmers in Karnataka? This note looks at the distribution of the annual subsidy, finding it to be quite inequitable. By far the largest beneficiaries are medium and large farmers and the great majority of the rural population receive no benefits at all.

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