October 16, 2012

2012: Highlight # 11

The Dug Well Recharge Program was an attempt to replicate the success and energy of Saurashtra’s recharge movement. Five years down, what can we learn from it? Krishnan explains...

Ten Things to Learn from the Dug Well Recharge Program

Sunderrajan Krishnan

Based on a presentation by IWMI researchers to the Finance Minister of India, in 2007 Government of India launched the Dug Well Recharge Scheme as a national program with an outlay of Rs. 1800 crore. Its aim was to educate and incentivize farmers in 100 hard rock districts of the country to modify their open dug wells for groundwater recharge. However, after around 3 years of operation of the scheme, our review found that it failed to achieve much success in the country. Analysis of the scheme’s implementation provides us lessons that could be useful for any national groundwater program for the future.

This Highlight explores what went wrong with the Dug Well Recharge Scheme and provides several suggestions for any future program. It concludes that the idea of groundwater recharge itself needed to be broadened beyond dug wells; but even the success of such a broader idea would depend much on the quality of its implementation. Suggestions aim at making such programs more people-friendly, demand driven, enabling and locally flexible initiatives rather than a target driven subsidy-based measure. Key to success would also be excellent communication that is aimed at addressing individual farmer’s issues as well as social concerns of a larger nature.

No comments:

Post a Comment