January 25, 2003

2003: Highlight # 2

Public tubewells are often defunct relics of an era gone by. Mukherji and Kishore discuss Gujarat's success in transferring their management to farmers and improving their performance...

Public Tubewell Transfer in Gujarat

Marketing Approach to IMT

Aditi Mukherji and Avinash Kishore

Public tubewells have been a failure almost everywhere in India. Far from providing benefits of economies of scale, they are now a burden that public agencies want to get rid of. Efforts to transfer their management to irrigators have also met with little success.

Gujarat Water Resource Development Corporation (GWRDC) has achieved rare success in tubewell transfer by transferring around 1800 tubewells to groups of water users. Findings of the study suggest that there has been a marked improvement in the performance of tubewells after transfer.

The essence of GWRDC’s success lies in its willingness to transfer actual management to farmers and devising a simple and flexible process for doing so. Other states can replicate GWRDC’s success by adopting a similar target oriented marketing approach towards irrigation transfer with the interest of the water users as the main focus.

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