ITC Limited, Kolkata, implements integrated watershed development programme as a corporate initiative (2007)

A multifaceted inititative by ITC, Kolkata, covering 66,723 acres in 450 villages from 23 districts in 7 states

This presentation deals with the Integrated Watershed Development Programme being implemented by ITC Limited, Kolkata.  Given that it is a large agro-based company with a pan-India presence, it is hardly surprising that ITC's soil and water conservation interventions are on a major scale, covering 66,723 acres in 450 villages from 23 districts in 7 states.

More than 30,000 acres of catchment area have been treated, nearly 4000 acres of additional land brought under cultivation and over 35,000 acres of command area benefited, with 311,480 person-days of employment generated in the process. There has been a focus on reducing groundwater use and recharging aquifers, and 1530 water harvesting structures have been created as a part of this effort.

It has been a multifaceted initiative, with agricultural inputs such as vermiculture and training, livestock development inputs like artificial insemination and milk marketing, infrastructural facilitation through group wells and sprinkler sets and institutional interventions through the creation of CBOs for villages, farming communities and, in particular, tribal communities.

While introducing corporate management tools such as MIS to monitor progress, the activities have made use of local and traditional practices to improve productivity, vegetation cover and the like. A twenty five per cent contribution by the communities has been built into the programmes to foster a sense of ownership while, at the same time, non-monetary contributions such as shramdaan (labour volunteering) have also been given recognition.

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