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India Takes Strides in Basin Management with Academic Collaboration

New Delhi: India is embarking on a significant initiative aimed at enriching its water resources through basin management. The Union Minister of Jal Shakti, Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, expressed confidence that India’s relentless efforts in basin management would not only lead to water abundance within the country but would position India as a global guide for river basin management.

Shekhawat made these remarks during the signing ceremony of an agreement between 12 technical education institutions, marking a crucial step toward academic and research collaboration for basin management of six prominent rivers. The collaborative effort, under the National River Conservation Plan, involves ministries and academic institutions, assigning responsibilities for research, monitoring, and technical knowledge gathering for the condition assessment and management plan of Mahanadi, Godavari, Krishna, Cauveri, Narmada, and Periyar rivers to 12 institutions, including various IITs, NITs, and NEERI.

The Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) was signed by G. Ashok Kumar, Project Director on behalf of the National River Conservation Directorate (NRCD), and directors of the consortium institutes, including IIT Kanpur. The signing ceremony, held at the Dr. Ambedakar International Centre, New Delhi, saw the participation of directors of all institutions involved, along with representatives from the National Mission for Clean Ganga and the Ministry of Jal Shakti.

Commending the work of the Centre for Ganga Basin Management and Studies (cGanga), led by IIT Kanpur, Gajendra Singh Shekhawat emphasized the philosophy of ‘Ekoham Bahusyam,’ underscoring the expansion of knowledge through collaboration. He expressed hope that these academic institutions, similar to cGanga’s contributions to the Ganga River, would strengthen the technical aspects of basin management for rivers across different regions of India.

The Minister highlighted the success of the Namami Gange Mission, linking river conservation to livelihood, and the principle of Arth Ganga, emphasizing the need for knowledge-based river conservation and revitalization schemes. He encouraged leveraging the experience gained from Ganga Basin Management in planning for the basin management of the six rivers.

Ms. Debashree Mukherjee, Secretary of the Ministry of Jal Shakti, and G. Ashok Kumar, Director General of National Mission for Clean Ganga, also addressed the function. Dr. Vinod Tare, founder director of cGanga, provided an overview of the condition assessment and management plan for the six rivers.

The responsibilities for basin management were assigned to the following institutions:

Narmada Basin Management: IIT Indore and IIT Gandhinagar
Godavari Basin Management: IIT Hyderabad and NEERI Nagpur
Mahanadi Basin Management: IIT Raipur and IIT Rourkela
Krishna Basin Management: NIT Warangal and NIT Surathkal
Cauvery Basin Management: IISc Bangalore and NIT Trichy
Periyar Basin Management: IIT Palakkad and NIT Calicut

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