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सेमिनार: अंग्रेज़ी सीखने का अवसर (23 सितंबर: दोपहर 3 बजे)
Q. Water Crisis: In the background of present acute water crisis in the various parts of country, discuss the problem and possible solutions.
Apr 27, 2016 Related to : GS Paper 1 and 3

Ans :


Recently central government has informed to Supreme Court that more than one-third of country is affected by severe drought. At least 33 crore people in these 256 districts (out of 675) are affected by drought. Water scarcity is so acute in many parts of the country. Major parts of Maharashtra, Telangana, Bundelkhand (UP), Odisha Rajasthan, Kerala are reeling under a severe water crisis.  Places like Latur, which is facing a second successive drought, trains have been deployed to supply drinking water.


  • Due to the rapid growth of population, the per capita availability of fresh water has declined sharply from 3,000 cubic metres to 1,123 cubic metres over the past 50 years. (Global average is 6000 cm)

  • Two successive failed monsoons depleted the water reservoirs. Many of the minor water tanks have dried up and storage in the 91 nationally monitored reservoirs has gone down from 158 billion cubic metres (BCM) to about 36 BCM.

  • Depleting groundwater levels the biggest threat to rural livelihoods and food security. There’s been a 6% point dip in share of groundwater wells within 10 metres below the ground.

  • Thousands of villages are facing record-breaking drought, now depended solely on water from state supplied tankers. Fearing violence over water, recently the Latur district administration has imposed restrictions on assembly.

  • In addition to poor monsoons, decades of groundwater abuse, populist and flawed water policies and corruption in water reforms have turned water crisis to more serious one.


About 68% of India is drought-prone in varying degrees and these droughts are characterised by water scarcity and crop distress. Hence the primary responsibility for dealing with drought, need to enhance the efficiency of usage of water. Indian agriculture accounts for 80% of total water consumption, efficiency of use leaves much to growing population and their food security needs.

Government should promote rain water harvesting more seriously and should make it compulsory for major players. Government should build more reservoirs across the country. There should be more dams constructed, especially at the places where the rain water gets drained out without utilisation. Also river linking is a good idea that will apparently solve the water problem in water deficit states.


Water crisis is a topic which is not restricted to India alone but it is a global issue. The world contains finite stock of water stock, but the size of population is growing at very high rate. Hence the efficient and judicious use of water is only solution ahead.

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