1. Amit Dwivedi 462. Sonika Minz 473. Jay Prakash 48
WHAT IS WATER HARVESTING WHY WATER HARVESTING IN INDIA ? DIFFERENT TRADITIONAL WATER HARVESTING SYSTEM IN INDIA WHAT HAPPEN TO TRADITIONAL WATER HARVESTING SYSTEMS IN INDIA CONCLUSION
Water harvesting is the gathering, or accumulating and storing, of water. Water harvesting has been used to provide drinking water, water for livestock, water for irrigation or to refill aquifers in a process call ground water recharge
In India, most water reaches the ground through rain. In contrast, in Western countries (mid-latitude regions), 50% of water coming down (precipitation) is in the form of snow Snow melts slowly and percolates into the ground and recharges ground water Rain water need management Rain water drained out in the rivers and sea, if not managed properly
Total annual rainfall in India: 400 million hectare- meters (area x height) India’s area: 329 million hectares If evenly spread, average height: 1.28m Actual distribution, highly skewed area- wise: Thar desert receives less than 200mm raifall annually, while Cherrapunji receives 11,400mm But almost every part of India receives at least 100mm annually 100 mm rain water will be sufficient for drinking purpose, if manage properly.
Water has been harvested in India since antiquity, with our ancestors perfecting the art of water management. They harvested the rain drop directly. They harvested water from flooded rivers India have Different Harvesting Systems all over India depends on rainfall pattern, available resourses and local wisdom
Water from melting snow and ice is the only source of water here. Even the Thar desert gets more rainfall. The water in the streams was hence led by channels to storage tanks called zing and used the next day.
Kuls are water channels found in precipitous mountain areas. These channels carry water from glaciers to villages in the valley of Himachal Pradesh. Where the terrain is muddy, the kul is lined with rocks to keep it from becoming clogged. In the Jammu region too, similar irrigation systems called kuhls.
Rainfall and groundwater are themain sources of water in this region. Natural springs are used fordrinking water purposes. Zabo, meaning impoundingrun-off’ is practiced in NAGALAND The runoff collects in ponds in themiddle terrace. The runoff then passes through slopes where there are cattle yards, and finally reaches the paddy fields at the foot of the hills It is still practiced in villages such as kikruma in Nagaland
Rapidly flowing water from streams and springs was captured by bamboo pipes and transported over hundreds of metres to drip irrigate black pepper cultivation in Meghalaya. Many bamboo pipes of varying diameters and lengths were laid to manipulate and control the flow of water.
This region has many natural rivers like Brahmaputra and Barek rivers. Dongs or ponds were constructed by the Bodo tribes of Assam to harvest water for irrigation. . These ponds are individually owned with no community involvement. In the Jalpaiguri district of West Bengal, small irrigation channels called dungs or jampois were used to bring water from streams to rice fields.
The Thar Desert receives very little rainfall. Tarais (reservoirs) were built in the valley between sand dunes by constructing bunds at the two ends. Individual homes and farms in Bikaner built tankas. Stepwells are India’s most unique contribution to architecture. Kunds or kundis in Western Rajasthan and Gujarat harvest rainwater for drinking Kuis or beris were used to harvest rainwater in areas with scanty rainfall.
The region is full of ravines and valleys. Irrigation by wells and tanks was very common Both Jodhpur and Udaipur in Rajasthan are dotted with innumerable lakes. The Chandela Kings (851 – 1545 A.D.) of Bundelkhand, Madhya Pradesh, established a network of several hundred tanks that ensured a satisfactory level of groundwater.
The Bundela Kings who came later built close to palaces and temples and were not originally meant for irrigation at all, but for the use of all. Small earthen check dams called johads were built in Rajasthan to capture and conserve rainwater.
The rainfall is low to moderate. Many kinds of irrigation systems like wells, embankments across rivers and streams, reservoirs and tanks are all found here. Check dams or diversion weirs called bhandaras were built by villagers across rivers in Maharashtra. In Andhra Pradesh, where the annual rainfall is 1000 mm, large tanks called cheruvu were the main irrigation source.
Surangam, a special water harvesting structure, is found in Kasaragod district in northern Kerala. People here depend on groundwater
Shallow wells called virdas were dug in low depressions called jheels (tanks). They were built by the nomadic Maldharis who identified these depressions by studying the flow of water during the monsoon.
Being on the coast, Kendrapada district of Orissa suffers from waterlogging, floods or saltwater ingress. There are also a number of rivers, creeks and ponds. The solution was a community pond in each village, with huge bunds to stop saltwater ingress Every house also had a pond in its backyard
The Shompen tribals of the Great Nicobar Island made full use of the undulating terrain to harvest water. In the lower parts, bunds of hard wood were built and water collected in the pits called jackwells. A full length of bamboo is cut longitudinally and placed along a gentle slope with the lower end leading into a shallow pit. These serve as conduits for rainwater which is collected drop by drop in pits called Jackwells.
Ahar-pyne is a traditional floodwater harvesting system indigenous to south Bihar
Decades of British rule ravaged the peoples’ water knowledge heritage. Technological changes such as the introduction of tubewells put richer farmers in command of the tank area. Big Farmers have lost interest in the community management of the tanks because of technological development. In the urban areas these systems have either disappeared because of pressure from real estate lobbies or have become heavily polluted. Today, traditional water harvesting systems are only important in remote areas such as the Himalayan states which are beyond the immediate reach of water bureaucracies.
Ground water exploitation in India is very high Area irrigated by ground water has increased 5 times since independence Tubewells and borewells constructed primarily by larger farmers, encouraged by cheap electricity drain ground water Big dam projects have hardly had any positive impact Very few surface irrigation initiatives completed since independence Too expensive to complete More importantly, displace communities, Also reduce soil quality, lead to deforestation, all of which is detrimental to ground water levels
Traditional water harvesting systems have withstood the test of time Hence, worth taking seriously, of course in the current context and fully understanding their limitations Example of the stellar success of traditional water harvesting systems: The city of Jodhpur, even though several hundred years old and right in the middle of a desert, has never been evacuated for lack of water. The traditional water harvesting systems worked even in droughts when piped water supply failed.
Several success stories in watershed development like Sukhomajari village, ralegan siddhi village have shown the ray of hope for local management of water with involvement of community and small budget. Water security is not only determined by the nature alone. It is the culture, society and tradition which have to play an equal role. If land and rainwater managed properly with the efficient water harvesting techniques then there will never be the problem of water scarcity in any part of India.