Maharashtra was adjudged the second-best state in water conservation effort by the Ministry of Jal Shakti, Department of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, at the 2019 National Water Awards on Wednesday. Vice President M Venkaiah Nadu, who attended the event virtually, gave away the awards.
Tamil Nadu was the top state in overall water conservation efforts, whereas Rajasthan settled for third position. In the same category, Mizoram received a special award.
Naidu said, “Schools, colleges, universities, communities and NGOs must actively take part in water conservation. It can be achieved through people’s participation along with all stakeholders.”
Aniket Lohiya of Manavlok, an NGO from Beed, won the ‘Water Warrior’ award. The organisation has been working for the development of forest, land and water in Marathwada district. Besides, it is also involved in works to improve the health and socio-economic situation of local residents.
In another award for the state, the Sangli district administration bagged the top prize in the river revival category for contribution in reviving Agrani river. Being one of the drought-prone districts of the state, Agrani is a lifeline for farmers across five talukas. The administration not only revived the river but also improved the groundwater situation. More than 1,500 tube wells and bore wells have been replenished, which have supported irrigation. In addition, the district undertook the plantation of over 32,000 trees spread across 5,500 hectares as part of environment protection in the district.
For the second consecutive year, the Maharashtra Water Regulatory Authority (MWRA) won the first prize in the water regulatory authority category.
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