State-wide Jal Shakti Abhiyan to be launched tomorrow

It is aimed at enhancing water bodies capacity in 100 days before the onset of monsoon

Rural Development and Panchayat Raj Minister K.S. Eshwarappa on Wednesday said that the ambitious Jal Shakti Abhiyan-Catch the Rain mooted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be launched in Hubballi on Friday. The abhiyan proposes to rejuvenate water bodies across the State in 100 days before the onset of monsoon.

Speaking to reporters here, Mr. Eshwarappa said that Padmashri award-winning social worker Mahesh Sharma will launch the abhiyan in the presence of Union Minister Pralhad Joshi and Industries Minister Jagadish Shettar. The Prime Minister launched the programme on March 22 and zilla panchayats and district administrations across the State have commenced work.

The Minister said that the abhiyan intends to promote rainwater harvesting on a mega scale by rejuvenating water bodies in rural areas. It includes rejuvenation of tanks, removing silt from Raja Kaluves, construction of tanks at gram panchayat level, removing silt from tanks, restoring tank bunds, repairing tank water distribution canals, construction of bunds and open wells/agricultural ponds on land of farmers who own less than 5 acres, rejuvenation of temple kalyanis, construction of multi-arch check-dams, rainwater harvesting system on government buildings, afforestation and many more.

The respective Deputy Commissioners have been assigned the responsibility of ensuring coordination between different stake-holder departments for the effective implementation of the abhiyan, Mr. Eshwarappa said. In-charge Ministers of districts and jurisdictional MLAs would spearhead the movement at the district and taluk levels. There would be continuous monitoring of the progress of the programme.

Mr. Eshwarappa said that the abhiyan aims at enhancing capacity of water bodies in rural areas to hold as much water as possible before the onset of the monsoon. This should address the water woes of rural areas to a considerable extent.

Available resources under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme would be utilised to undertake the abhiyan, the Minister said.

Ministers Kota Srinivas Poojari and S. Angara, Zilla Panchayat president Meenakshi Shanthigod, legislators from the district and others were present.

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