International Rainwater Catchment Systems Conference
Mannheim, Germany - September 2001
Legal and Political Aspects of Rainwater Harvesting
Watersheds in the New Millennium: Can Rainwater Harvesting Drought-proof
Energy Environment Group
A6 Paschim Vihar
New Delhi 110063
India's substantial investment in rural development during the past
five decades of post-independence era has not produced matching transformation
on the ground. With focus of development being largely sector specific,
the impact has rarely reached the rural poor. Consequently, sustainable
transformation of rural ecosystems with people's participation has remained
isolated and scattered.
People's participation, the key to community-centered development, has
remained largely stuck in the `you participate in my programme' mode.
As a result, for lack of community ownership the impact of investment
in rural development and natural resource generation has not been effective
and long lasting.
The recent impetus to already-existing watershed development programmes
is a policy response to reverse the prevailing malaise in integrated rural
development programmes. The experiences, as of now, are quite varied,
ranging from about a dozen very successful projects to a large number
of non-effective projects. But wherever enterprising community groups
had decided to better their circumstances with some external assistance,
they were able to improve their socio-economic conditions considerably
in a relatively short time span.
Sukhomajri project in Haryana and Adagaon project in Maharashtra, to
name a few, have clearly demonstrated that eco-restoration is possible
in highly degraded lands and that it can regenerate local economies and
alleviate poverty in a sustainable and cost-effective manner. Today, these
initiatives are particularly important because they have now matured.
An advanced level of ecological succession has now reached and their economic
impact is clearly visible. However, the numbers of such successful projects
continue to be limited. Nevertheless, the success of some of these projects
has given an added impetus to watershed development in the country.
PDF of full document (5pp, 39kb)
|Note: The IRCSA proceedings
section is still new and under active management, If you find any problems,
ommissions or corrections please contact
the administrator so we can put things right.