Union Minister Nitin Gadkari today pitched for use of underground pipes of large diameter to transfer water over traditional systems such as canal to avoid high cost, displacement of people, water thefts and its wastage.
Inaugurating a workshop by WAPCOS, a public sector enterprise under the Water Resources Ministry, on 'Use of Large Diameter Pipes for Mega Water Conveyance Systems', he noted that 25 per cent to 30 per cent of the country's agricultural workforce migrates from rural to urban areas only due to irrigation problem and resultant difficulties related to agricultural.
Lack of water is one of the major reasons for crop failure, which results in farmer suicides, the water resources minister said, adding the problem has to be addressed by transporting water from where it is available to scarcity-hit places.
"Alternate technology is the need of the hour for mega water conveyance systems in the country use of underground large diameter pipes can help transferring water and avoid high cost, displacement of people, water thefts and its wastage when compared to traditional conveyance system such as canals," Gadkari said.
Referring to the proposed 30 river connectivity projects in the country at an estimated cost of Rs 8 lakh crore, he said, "The challenge is to find suitable, cos- effective, environment-friendly technology for efficient water transfer without compromising on quality."
Briefing reporters this evening after the workshop, Minister of State for Water Resources Arjun Ram Meghwal also pitched for the technological intervention like use of large diameter pipes as the government "speedily" takes steps towards food and water securities.
He said laying pipes underground will also ensure that there is no need to acquire land while implementing water conveyance projects.
"Our government is taking speedy steps towards ensuring food security and water securities. There is, therefore, a need to adapt to technical changes, best practices world over," Meghwal told reporters.
Asserting that several countries such as the US, Brazil, Japan, Italy, China and Germany are already using such pipes, the minister called for implementing "best practices" world over to ensure efficient water use.
"Till now, 16 mm, 18 mm and 20 mm (thick) pipes were used to transfer water. Our planners would also say more the thickness, more would be strength and durability of the pipes. Now, there is a new technology of less thick pipe. Now 6 mm pipe can be used," he said.
Meghwal said states, such as Maharashtra and Gujarat, have already taken the initiative by laying underground pipelines.
"Rajasthan is also thinking about it. In new detailed project reports (DPRs), there is this input of underground pipelines," he said, adding the ministry is suggesting use of such pipes in preparation of new DPRs.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)