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ONLINE GD AT URPERCENTILE : INDIA'S WATER CRISIS

Hrish, Kanika Bansal and Ashutosh Mishra clear this GD.

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www.UrPercentile.com: The topic of today’s GD is “India's Water Crisis”

SHIKHAR GUPTA: Hello friends the topic of our discussion is 'INDIA'S WATER CRISIS'. I think India’s growing population is putting severe constraint on all our natural resources. Most of our water resources are either contaminated or dry

Neha : Water is most valuable property for human beings and its crisis is very serious problem. But government view is not as serious. It’s become a political issue for them as in Kaveri matter. Government should take a hard action about wastage of water in urban areas.

Ankit Jain: India, with a sixth of the world's population, faces a rapidly growing water crisis, both in the urban and rural areas. These include wasteful practices in the use of water, particularly for irrigation, water-logging and salinity, and inadequate access to safe drinking water and sanitation. In many cities people depend on Private water tanks for water supply.

Hrish: Water resource is one of the most important resources for India, especially because of its large dependence on agriculture. Though India has many rivers and the Himalayan rivers are perennial in nature, the major problems that come under the so called "water crisis" are the inadequate or excessive distribution of water and also the quality of water available.

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Kanika Bansal: Why is India not able to meet its water demand? What are the factors which are affecting this? What can be the various things we can look for to improve the current situation? I think these can be some of the points, we can look about.

Karun: The Indian government has to keep in pace with this growing population and has to met with all the requirements. The authorities controlling water crisis should search for proper and adequate solutions like canalization of rivers

Mahesh kumar: Perhaps India can take a cue from Canada. Where waste water from drains is collected and treated instead of letting into sea. This water is as good as drinking water but only used for purposes other than drinking. Which reduces the dependence on rain or rivers?

Hrish: We will first look at the drought situations that arise mainly in western India. The main reason for the inequitable distribution of water in India is the topography of the country and it primary dependence on the SW monsoons which may be irregular from year to year.

Kanika Bansal: Besides this people are polluting the water day by day, this is one of the major concern for us to stop such activities. Even as we can see the dispute between the Karnataka and Tamil Naidu on utilizing the water capacity of Kaveri river this is again due to the non utilization of water of Kaveri River effectively.

Saish: Water as it is said is the very essence of civilization. India often is referred to as the land of rivers and still we seem to have a problem. India is home to some of the biggest rivers in the Asian subcontinent the Ganga, Brahmaputra, the Beas to name a few but still the problem continues. The basic cause of this crisis I feel is poor management of these water bodies by the respective administrative bodies and state governments. I feel in India adequate technology has still not been put to use to harness the full potential of the water bodies.

Ashutosh Mishra: Good evening everybody. We have been given a topic which I feel is the most talked about topic and must be taken seriously if we want to excel in any field. Indian economy is on a fast pace but still there are several hindrances among which this is one of the most severe causes. Indian industries rely greatly on the availability of water.

Ankit Jain: Why Government would only responsible for everything. Isn't we are lacking something.

Hrish: To make up for this inequitable distribution the Government had proposed the national river integration scheme which aimed at eliminating both the drought and flood problems of the country.

Rani Mehta: India's water crisis is mainly due to our inability to use and store the rain water effectively. We depend on rain water for agriculture in many states and there are no dams on many rivers. If we will be able to combine few rivers and build dams on that then it would help us.

SHIKHAR GUPTA: Everyday in the morning water hardly trickles down the pipes Our hole day goes in planning how to save water for our daily needs. I think the main reason for water crisis in India is poor management. All the sewage is dumped into the rivers which makes them unfit to use and government alone is not responsible for this crisis infact we the people should conserve water by storing water and making sure that we doesn’t harm water bodies by polluting them.

Mahesh kumar: Rain water harvesting and river canalization are needed for overcoming a part of this crisis. Water conservation should be taken up as a civilian movement which generates awareness in the masses.

Hrish: Yes Rani, storage of rain water is one major concern but there have been efforts from the Government on this area, prominent examples being the Indira Gandhi canal and the Sardar Sarovar Dam.

Kanika Bansal: Besides this they should have stricter control on states for reservation of water . Water should be reserved on the basis of requirement and extra water should be allowed to flow thru more of the irrigable lands needed. Joining of reasons in on the discussion but as it may harm the ecological balance this thing is not implemented.

Ankit Jain: Rani yeah definitely it would help us, but wouldn't you think there are many reasons beyond that, because I think we have made enough dams up to now
 
Rani Mehta: There is one proposal to join all rivers of India, to eliminate the uncertainty and dependence on rain water for irrigation and drinking purpose. However it requires very large investment and our parliament is still considering that option.

Hrish: But Neha, instead of just considering the Government culpable for the crisis, we must understand that poor awareness about water saving measures especially in rural areas leads to a lot of wastage of water.

Karun: We should not be dependent on rain water only rather we should try to fix this crisis by management of resources which we have right now in our hand.

Rani Mehta: Another problem is that we are unable to complete the intended project in the decided time period. Most of our project stretches beyond its time limits. Sardar sarover is one example of it.

SHIKHAR GUPTA: Well, I fully agree with Mahesh that there is lack of awareness particularly in rural areas how to conserve water.

Neha -: Yes friend you are right but in rural areas there’s more use for it due to agricultural business.

Saish: The authorities should seriously take up plans to channelise all the water resources into a central supply. Also rain water should be adequately utilized to maximize efficiency.

Ankit Jain: If we look over revenue earned by sale of water, we would found that it is very less than the amount spent on maintenance of water treatment plant.

Ashutosh Mishra: The severity of this problem can be instantiated by this fact that a small proportion of our population ponder over the selectivity between filtered water and mineral water while a vast majority is still waiting with their eyes open for even muddy water which can at least serve their basic family needs.

Hrish: Moreover Rani, the river integration scheme that you are talking about has severe problems cited by the scientists in the country as it would lead to changing the topography of the country and increase the seismic activity.

Kanika Bansal : Yes, I agree with you above so I think they should try to seek some reforms so that there can be some result midway.

Rani Mehta : Hrish what I meant was that if that integration problem if feasible would help us resolve the problem.

Hrish: Ankit. I am not sure I understand the point regarding revenue through sale of water. Can you elaborate on it?
 
Ashutosh Mishra: I totally agree with Hrish about the scientific drawbacks of the scheme but I think there must be an optimized way which can serve our purpose without these difficulties. I think one example regarding revenue generation can be taken from the current market of packaged water, particularly if we link it with railways which hold the largest demand in this field.

Hrish: Right but as it stands now Rani, we would not be able to achieve this integration in the short run and must rather concentrate on preventing the drainage of rainwater into the seas.

Kanika Bansal: Then there is no point on looking from these things only we should try to look for the effective utilization of water, like Yamuna river is so much polluted and we need to spend crores of rupees for utilization of its water . Reforms should be there to stop polluting the water of Yamuna River.

Ankit Jain: Hrish, I am saying if you compare your monthly electricity bill with your monthly water bill it become clearer to you.

Neha -: Yes Ashu, I agree with that’s the point I want to say, first we look inner our self. Who is responsible for it?

Hrish: Ankit. Oh in that way it is not a means of generating revenue but of covering up the costs involved in water purification.

Ashutosh Mishra: Also, there are many industries which rely mainly upon basic infrastructures of which water is the most important issue.

Rani Mehta: Another point here worth considering is that people who have plenty of water available don't understand the value of water and don't conserve it, we need to make them understand that it is really important that they conserve water.

www.UrPercentile.com: Is it really a crisis or is it Mismanagement?

SHIKHAR GUPTA: I think it is mismanagement because in India with so many rivers we cannot ever have water shortage. Conflicts over water mirror the most vexing changes India is facing. With competing demands of both rural and urban areas I think we should do something to conserve water and make sure that it is available for all purposes like irrigation, drinking etc.

Karun: Proper usage of revenue generated from sales of water and its guided application under some constant monitoring committee can do wonders for water management

Kanika Bansal: In some areas it can be termed as crisis because there is total shortage of water but then in totality if we see it is more of the mismanagement. I agree with Karun but then we should try to increase our revenue from water supply as these are very less as compared to other sectors

Ashutosh Mishra: I think its mismanagement in some areas but in several areas it is natural reasons which force this calamity. For example, in Delhi itself, with mushrooming population the water crisis is increasing which also caters with the electricity problem.

Neha : Yes friends just like Tamil nadu and Karnataka who are fighting for water. But in north India there is not as much water problem.

Hrish: Right Bansal, so we are dealing with mismanagement rather than a crisis in terms of amount of water available but if you look at the quality of water, we find that even the amount of pure water available is very less. As for the purity of water, about 20% of the communicable diseases in India are water-borne and prominent among these are cholera, jaundice and typhoid

Ankit Jain: It's not overall crisis but its mismanagement that turned it into crisis. Groundwater is the dominant resource that has been developed in rural India to meet the drinking water needs. But often, the shallower wells are found to be affected by fluoride, arsenic, iron, salt and/or microbial contamination.

Mahesh kumar: Yes it is mismanagement turned into crisis which needs to be managed now.

Saish: Urpercentile, Rather a case of mismanagement. Its not that India has insufficient water resources only that they are not properly utilized. Mass awareness has to be created in both urban and rural areas for careful use of water. This would sure help in the long run in easing the crisis. Basically if every citizen of India plays his part in using water conservatively wherever needed, half the problem would be solved

Ashutosh Mishra: But can we blame that mismanagement is there if the basic cause is not in our hands. Can we control shifting population to support our cause.

Kanika Bansal: Yes and thus the crore of rupees spend in water improvement can be basically spend in other direction like canalizing the water if we take major step towards this. This is what aspect of mismanagement is only. They should try to implement harder rules for the people who are doing this.

Hrish: But Kanika Bansal, do u really feel lack of funds is the reason for mismanagement? I think it is just that the funds allocated by the government don’t trickle down to have tangible results for water improvement.

Karun: Our former prime minister 'Mr Atal Bihari Vajpayee' even gave a very good seminar on river channelisation but Indian authorities should take bold steps to implement his sayings. I agree with Kanika Bansal that there is complete mismanagement of funds by water managing authorities.

www.UrPercentile.com: Thanks everyone, request everyone to give a concluding statement.

Kanika Bansal: So I think problem with India is basically of mismanagement as they are not regulating it properly . We need better reform to control the misuse , pollution , wastage , and for proper storage of water available in surplus in various regions.

Saish: The so called water crisis I feel in India can be eased to a great extent by better management between the various governing bodies in charge of these water bodies and also by utilizing new scientific methods for harnessing rain water and also control water resources like tapping of ground water.

Neha : For summarizing the GD we really find that the water crisis in India is really based on mismanagement where there is lots of problem thru water and there is a place where people waste water.

Hrish: Well in conclusion, it can be said that the water crisis facing India is mainly due to the inadequate distribution of water resources in India coupled with mismanagement and contamination of existing resources. The revenue generated by selling water to the masses must be re-channelized to further purification of water and awareness about healthy and judicious use of water amongst the masses will be significant in solving the water crisis.

Rani Mehta: We have state disputes over the water allocations, and disputes with Pakistan also for the water, every state is looking for their own benefits and due to which the whole country benefits are overlooked and no effective outcome comes and many important projects like Saradar Sarover gets extended for long so mismanagement is one of the important cause for water shortage.

SHIKHAR GUPTA: I think it is high time that masses are awarded regarding proper utilization of water resources and government should make laws more strict so that nobody can cause harm to these water bodies.

Mahesh kumar: Water crisis today is a multifaceted problem, and hence a multifaceted solution is needed for India’s water crisis. It should counter every challenge faced by Indians. Solution should come from all spheres like technology, civilian movement, government intervention etc.

Ashutosh Mishra: We had a great discussion on the topic which is essentially one of the most prominent problems in country owing to its utility in general and civic life, value in market, usefulness in industries, their capability to increase the yield in agriculture. But, to do so we should go for its root cause and that is prominently the mismanagement which can be solved partially by river integration scheme, keeping other.

Ankit Jain: See we have discuss lot of point over why and how water become a crisis in India instead of having large number of rivers. The only way to solve this issue is to have coordination among people and Governmet and people need to understand the importance of water.

Karun: Well instead of playing such blame games on authorities the people of India should manage their own water consumption judiciously. Awareness among people is the key factor to overcome any crisis.

Comments by UrPercentile Subscribers :

Dhiraj : India is a huge country and as a famous saying is there that "water taste changes here after every 5km" basically it means that we have different cultures from different origins, but one problem is common to all of us that is water problem whether its drinking water or water needed for agriculture. Water is a covering earth's 70% area, but still we face severe water crisis in India Delhi , which is called as capital of India faces severe drinking water problems and in summer's they have to ask for water from neighboring states like Haryana supplies them around 4000 cusecs, but still they are facing severe problems here. Water is an important resource which can be used in very effective way specially for electricity presently we are producing around 588 billion KWH of electricity, as compared to 3892 produced by USA and 1472 produced by china, The major reason behind these figures is proper utilization by them of water resources. But we are more depended on thermal and other resources as compared to renewable resources
Even if we go to central India the water levels of dams in Pune had hit 5 years low this year, due to less rainfall  and that is ultimately affecting rain and ultimately water problems arises and we people are hit badly, so its a vicious circle. So if we have to come out of this crisis than first of all we should make our environment less populated
Secondly it’s about water wastage also, we waste a lot of water in our daily deeds, and we should take care about the water wastage and utilize it properly.

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