Water Policy in India - A brief overview: A paper by Centre for Public Policy (IIM Bangalore)

This paper by the Centre for Public Policy (CPP) of the Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Bangalore adds to the debate on water policy in India, and provides a general overview of the main characteristics of irrigation development post-Independence and a review of its beneficial and adverse impacts. The problems that need to be addressed and measures needed to resolve them are highlighted. It recognizes the vital role of expansion of irrigation in transforming agriculture from one of near stagnation in the pre-independence period to one of sustained growth during the past five decades.

Despite the fact that the bulk of increased agricultural production is from the expansion of irrigated area and increase in irrigated crop yields, countless problems have emerged, which are highlighted in the paper. The factors underlying these problems and their remedial measures are highlighted. The paper stresses that remedying these deficiencies calls for reorientation of strategy and priorities in the water sector, as well as radical restructuring of institutional arrangements for planning, management and regulation of water use. It also calls for measures to create strong incentives to induce more efficient and prudent use of water by all concerned. It highlights the need to shift attention from augmentation of supplies to improving efficiencies – technical, production and economic – of the existing systems as well of regulating groundwater extraction. 

Download the paper from the Centre for Public Policy website here

Post By: Amita Bhaduri