Gurgaon Research Site_Dr. Vishal Narain

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Gurgaon Research Site_Dr. Vishal Narain

  1. 1. The Gurgaon Project Vishal Narain Kathmandu, August 2010
  2. 2. The Project Team • Vishal Narain – Economics, Rural Management, – PhD (legal anthropology and irrigation) • Sreoshi Singh – Geographer with specialisation in Regional Development, MPhil in urban development and Planning. – To still involve/hire – Research Associate or a community organizer – Preferably a first degree/background in the natural sciences to complement the team skills
  3. 3. The growth of Gurgaon city • Gurgaon is projected as a millenium city • Major outsourcing hub of northwest India – Most preferred outsourcing and high-tech destination in North India – Home to 80% of the foreign investment of the state of Haryana • Drawn a large number of MNCs and corporates that have located their headquarters/manufacturing plants in the city – Hero Honda, Maruti, Alcatel, IBM, General Electric, Nestle, Pepsi, Coca- Cola • Visual landscape – tall skyscrapers co-existing with village settlement areas and agricultural fields gradually disappearing • Plagued by poor infrastructure, and absence of a public transport system • Frontiers of the city still expanding – 56 residential sectors exist, another 56 on the anvil – Enormous implications for water and land resources
  4. 4. Characteristics of the city • Three major reasons behind its growth – Proximity to the national capital and international airport – Initiatives of state government like policies for SEZs – Real estate boom since the 1980s
  5. 5. The periurban water issues • Major Multiple claimants on water resources – Residential areas/real estate – glitzy malls – Recreation, amusement parks and tourist facilities – Farm-houses – nature conservation (SNP) • Peripheral villages have lost agricultural/grazing lands – for the above purposes – for WTPs – For canals to bring water to the WTPs
  6. 6. Periurban water issues in Gurgaon • Falling water tables: – 70% of Gurgaon’s water needs are met trhough groundwater – Water table falling • Rural-urban water conflicts – Farmers breaching the Gurgaon channel that brings water to the Basai WTP • Rural-urban water flows – Water tankers a common sight – Groundwater used for irrigation now transported for nurseries to cater to urban residents • Urban-rural water flows – Sewerage irrigation common in periurban parts of Gurgaon • Pre-emption of water by farm-houses using expensive technologies, depriving locals of access
  7. 7. Sadhraana Village • Population of 3500 people – 425 households • Ahir, Pandat, Rajput, Lohaar, Nai, Harijan, Balmeek • Major crops grown – wheat, mustard, sorghum, pearl-millet, vegetables and lentils • No irrigation canal or sewage based irrigation – only groundwater
  8. 8. Land use change over the last two decades • 80 acres: Sultanpur National Park • 600 acres: farm-houses • 150 acres: Reliance SEZ • Left with about 40% of the net cultivated area recorded in the 1960s • Land and water appropriated by the urban elite
  9. 9. Major pressures on groundwater • Land and water nexus – Land below fresh water is of the highest price • Tubewells dug for Sultanpur National Park • Farm-houses major appropriator of groundwater – Extract water using submersible pump-sets not affordable by locals • Equity implications – Transport water over 3-4 km to their farm-houses using underground pipes when the farm-houses are located over saline groundwater
  10. 10. Impacts of growing pressures – Fall in water table over last decade • 60 ft to 100 ft • 20 ft to 60 ft – Farmers accessing saline groundwater • unfit for agriculture and livestock – Small and marginal farmers unable to afford the high costs of extraction • a submersible pump-set: Rs 100000 to Rs 125000
  11. 11. Responses/Adaptation strategies • Switch to sprinkler irrigation sets • Leave land fallow • Take only one irrigated crop per year • Borrow from friends/relatives – Social capital eroded
  12. 12. Budheda • 725 households and 5500 people • Rao saab, Jaat, Nai, Dhobi, Khaati, Jogi, Harijan, Balmeek, Kumbhaar, Ahir and Pandat • Crops grown – wheat, mustard, burseem, pearl-millet, vegetables • Many sources of irrigation depending on location of fields – tubewells/submersibles/ urban sewage
  13. 13. Land use change • Major source of land to supply water to the city: bears its ecological foot-print – 129 acres: WTP for Gurgaon city – 30 acres: second round of acquisition – 12 acres of grazing land for the same plant • Implications for landless and minority groups that use them for livestock – 17 acres for each of the two canals to carry water for WTP at Basai that is the major supplier of water for Gurgaon – Left with just about a fourth of its net cultivated area
  14. 14. Implications • The Gurgaon Water Supply Channel passes through the village to carry water to Basai WTP for Gurgaon city – source of opportunity and conflict – raised local water table – pipe outlet installed for village pond – Tube wells installed to benefit from water table rise • Had to be removed when the NCR channel was dug • Highlights vulnerability of farmers to uncertain water supply
  15. 15. Sultanpur • Well-known for the SNP • Pressures from the Reliance SEZ and national park: man-animal conflict • People living in the dhaanis particularly vulnerable to land acquisition • The Sultanpur lake, home to over 250 bird species is now dry – major noise among conservationists – reported widely in the media – Very good case of multiple claimants over scarce water and resulting conflicts
  16. 16. Ghata village • A major lake is now dry because of less rainfall and conversion of lakebed to residential area • This lake used to be full of water in monsoons and used for agriculture during rest of the year • Authorities now building a fresh lake and drainage system • Drying of lake reported widely in the media
  17. 17. Waziarabad village • Now under the Gurgaon Municipal Corporation • All agricultural lands acquired; livestock rearing and poultry are still common • Large influx of migrant settlers to cater to domestic needs of urban residential areas • Former cultivators now buy vegetables and fruits from a daily evening market • With pasturelands gone, fodder obtained from parks of residential colonies • Water used for small kitchen gardens, nurseries to cater to urban residential areas • Water tankers supplying water to residential areas common
  18. 18. Future Work Plan • Explore further research locations around Gurgaon in different directions • Use that as basis for finally narrowing down to a cluster of 3 villages based on potential richness of data and comparative insights – E.g. differing levels of periurban – Different kinds of issues: use cases as ‘archetypes’ or representations of the kinds of water insecurity experienced by periurban residents – Or villages adjacent to each other/close proximity to use the concept of a ‘periurban locale’ comprising villages with supportive and mutually constitutive flows and networks among them • Show how even adjacent locations exhibit differing patterns of vulnerability depending on local factors, access to assets
  19. 19. Methodology • Predominantly a qualitative research design with a mix of participatory and ethnographic approaches – On lines presented yesterday • Smaller quantitative studies within that based on what needs to be quantified and why • The qualitative component continues through the study and does not end after the scoping study, i.e. it is more than just a means of narrowing down to the quantitative study
  20. 20. Specific applications of the qualitative study • In-depth household interviews to understand – elements of risk, exposure, coping capacity • Give leads into a VCI relevant to the project/periurban settings – The livelihoods portfolio across urban and rural assets, patterns and role of remittances – how different members of the household (men/women) experience vulnerability • Break away from household as a unit of analysis informing conventional, structured interviews
  21. 21. Methodology • Focus group meetings – Examine how different groups experience water insecurity differently – Identify the vulnerable groups • Key informant interviews – Understand land transactions, forms of influence used to acquire land – Insecurity of land tenure shaping water insecurity
  22. 22. Methodology • Direct observation – Observation of irrigation and water collection activities to understand • actual access • conflicts and their resolution • user interface with technology • Semi-structured interviews with Panchayat members, municipal officers – understand their perspectives – identify institutional lacunae – possible interventions
  23. 23. Methodology • PRA exercises – To understand livelihoods (seasonality analyses) – patterns of poverty and access (wealth-ranking) – climate variability and changes in water supply (trend lines) – major impacts of development interventions on the villages (time line) – Institutional relationships and gaps (venn diagram) – Changes in resource use and profile (village transects, resource maps) – Basis of PAP (Participatory Action Planning)
  24. 24. At the end of next six months, I should have • A macro level description of land use change in Gurgaon and its implications for water use • A brief description of villages visited and major issues • Final selection of research sites with basic baseline information and rationale for selection • Listing of key issues for further investigation (narrowing down and focus) • Work plan for the remainder of the study

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