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National Water Mission Organizes Workshop for ‘Jal Shakti Abhiyan: Catch the Rain – 2024’ Campaign Implementation

New Delhi: The National Water Mission (NWM), under the Department of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation (DoWR), Ministry of Jal Shakti, organized a workshop-cum-orientation programme today in New Delhi for Central Nodal Officers (CNOs) and Technical Officers (TOs) participating in the ‘Jal Shakti Abhiyan: Catch the Rain – 2024’ (JSA: CTR 2024) campaign. The event was inaugurated by Union Minister of Jal Shakti C.R. Paatil and Minister of State for Jal Shakti, Dr. Raj Bhushan Choudhary.

The workshop aimed to prepare CNOs and TOs for their crucial roles in the campaign, which will be implemented from March 9, 2024, to November 30, 2024, across all districts of India. The theme of this year’s campaign, ‘Nari Shakti se Jal Shakti’, underscores the pivotal role of women in water conservation efforts.

Addressing the gathering, Paatil commended the Ministry of Jal Shakti for its efforts in the water sector and emphasized the need to scale up actions to meet the growing water demand. He cited the Surat Municipal Corporation as an exemplary model for supplying treated water to industries and implementing sustainable afforestation. Paatil stressed the importance of involving NGOs in water sector initiatives, particularly in rural areas, and encouraged public participation in addressing water-related issues through various communication channels, including social media.

Secretary (Department of Drinking Water and Sanitation), Vini Mahajan, highlighted the necessity of a ‘Whole of the Government’ approach by engaging partner ministries, state government agencies, and urban and rural authorities to scale up rainwater harvesting installations. She emphasized that rainwater is a primary source of water and urged comprehensive efforts to capture it effectively.

In the concluding session, Secretary (Department of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation), Debashree Mukherjee, addressed the impact of the current heat wave on water security and stressed the campaign’s role in increasing water storage through desilting of water bodies and maintenance of rainwater harvesting structures. She underscored the importance of motivating district authorities and involving civil society organizations to ensure the campaign’s success. Mukherjee also highlighted the use of local media for disseminating campaign benefits and urged the geo-tagging of water bodies for effective management.

The workshop featured presentations on critical topics such as the District Waterbody Atlas by the National Water Informatics Centre (NWIC), Springshed Management by the National Institute of Hydrology, and practical solutions for rainwater storage and recharge structures by the Central Ground Water Board (CGWB). Additionally, the Jal Jeevan Mission’s presentation focused on enhancing rural water supply, while insights and best practices from previous campaigns were shared by Pramod Kumar, Director, Pensioners’ Welfare.

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