U.P. Singh, Secretary, Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation expressed concern that inspite of reports of water crisis in many parts of the country, water related issues have not got adequate space in our conversations and our concerns in society as whole. New developments in the field of tele-communication and automobile sector easily get our attention and find space in centre stage but water which is the source of all life forms and essential for many of our needs is still not a subject of our concern in society as a whole. Addressing the inaugural session of ‘Restoring Water, Restoring Nature-II’ organized by Water Digest in New Delhi today, he said that the quality of water is worsening due to industrial pollutants and new technologies have to be devised to maintain the quality of water to fulfil all our needs.
The conference was organized to raise awareness and encourage action around water and related issues. The main purpose was to create a platform to discuss and showcase the best concepts of water conservation and management in synchrony with the UN’s sustainable development goals (SDG).
Shri Masood Husain, Chairman, Central Water Commission stressed the need of water management to fulfil our needs of drinking water, irrigation and industrial sector for entire population. He said that 80 percent of water is being used for agriculture and practices of micro irrigation, drip irrigation should be encouraged for efficient use of water. Civil society still do not understand all aspects of water crisis and mass awareness movement is required to educate masses. He further said that to check over exploitation of ground water, inter basin transfer of river water, micro irrigation techniques and recycle and reuse of water is the need of the hour.
Shri Rajiv Ranjan Mishra, DG, NMCG said that we do not really care about our rivers in-spite of the fact that rivers are essential for our existence. We need to create awareness about aquatic life in rivers, biodiversity and flora and fauna in rivers so that these could become a subject of conversation in our households and we could adopt a more caring attitude towards our rivers.
The conference was attended by around 150 participants from the industry, government bodies, development agencies and institutions. Three sessions along with panel discussion was organised on ‘Water for all: A platform to discuss available water resources, and the efforts needed to achieve SDG 6’; ‘Irrigation- Strategies to balance available resources and adapt technological innovativeness’; and ‘water tributary care about the rivers’.