Q.) What is the national river interlinking project? Can this be a viable solution to the water crisis India is facing currently? Critically examine.

Ans– Former Indian President APJ Abdul Kalam’s speech mentioned: “How one part of India gets flooded with water while other fights for a single drop.” He mentioned the interlinking of rivers as a viable solution. Today we talk about the national river interlinking project.

India is a big country having distinct geomorphic structures one part of the country has an abundance of water which led to flooding awesome having scarcity. This is due to river properties. most of the river flowing in Northern India has the perennial type of river because it originates from Himalayan glaciers which like the South Indian rivers are seasonal. After all, they originated from plateaus and small south Indian mountains or Ghats. So there is a need for interlinking projects to transfer surplus water to water-deficient rivers of South India.

Interlinking of rivers is the transfer of water from water surplus rivers to water-deficient rivers to provide equity and reduce the regional imbalance.

The national river interlinking project is an ambitious project that has been formulated under “The Ministry of Water Resources” and “The national water Development Authority” as a “National perspective plan”. The first plan to get approval is “Ken- Betwa Interlink”

Critically examine the solution which has the potential to solve the water crisis which India is facing. as per Niti Aayog composite water management index 2.0.

  1. Statical study- proper study conclude that it did not solve the existing problem of drought and also created new ecological problems.
  2. Environment- ecological equilibrium– as recent Ken-Betwa linkage got MOV with respective States– got a lot of apprehension from environment list regarding the forest land of the Panna Tiger Reserve. Example– a contradiction in intent- Project Tiger where we save on other side using their land as encroachment will break the equilibrium.
  3. Interlinking will create new problems of land resettlement and rehabilitation for both– flora and fauna and humans, especially tribals. example– Narmada Bachao Andolan highlighted the concern that fauna like crocodiles which were introduced to other parts of the river fail to survive and the tribal people till now did not get the promised land for resettlement.
  4. Legal and Tribunal problems– Article 262 gives power to Parliament to set up Tribunal for river water disputes enter therefore a lot of solutions are running form for half a century. Example– Kavery dispute (Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Kerala).
  5. Proper data agency–
    a.) Hydrological– sediment data, quality of water, river discharge
    b.) Metrological– Evaporation, temperature, humidity
    c.) Geological– soil moisture, Rock structure, slope.
  6. The ecological flow of the rivers will get challenged.

The government of India is building so many national rivers interlinking projects which benefited huge masses–

  1. Yamuna Rajasthan project
  2. Gandak Ganga interlink
  3. Kosi Mechi interlinking project
  4. Ken Betwa project
  5. Mahanadi Godavari project
  6. Hemavathi Netravati project
  7. Vedati Wardha project Bihar government is also creating a river linkage project in the North Bihar that is the Kosi mechi interlinking project for the better utilization of excess water to the other rivers as well as for irrigation.

Though the Government of India is trying to overcome the scarcity of crisis of water through this project some other initiatives can also be taken to safeguard the water crisis–

  1. Drip irrigation system– irrigation by drip technology or mulching decrease the requirement for water.
  2. Farming of crops according to climate conditions– Rice Water is an intensive crop so it is better to avoid it in low water areas like Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra.
  3. Optimum use of water in the industry– it is better to use low-quality water rather than drinkable water in industries.
  4. Rainwater harvesting– we can save water by rainwater harvesting method from rooftops.
  5. Save water by small exercises– close the tabs, and use water as per need.
  6. Formation of reservoirs– rainwater collected in the service will be utilized in the summer seasons.
  7. Plantation of more trees– as usual, tree density catches more rain so it is in us of time to plant more saplings.

There are also some issues with interlinking projects. It destroys various uniqueness of rivers as well as for now and flora of rivers. it also some great area of forest and destroy inclusive species. for the completion of interlining projects many big dams, canals, and reserve wires were made due to which surroundings land will become Swayam p and not good for agriculture. this can also reduce the production of grains.

After citing so many problems arose from interlinking projects. which will be wise to choose other means of in-situ water safeguard procedure and optional use of it.

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