Alarming drop in underground water level in Haryana and Punjab

Haryana and  Punjab are facing severe drop in groundwater water level but the situation is worst in Haryana state as such farmers are finding widespread crisis. According to the latest available data, more than three-fourth of Haryana state’s total area spread across 20 of the 22 districts has observed fast dip in water levels since past about a decade. In case of short rainfall in coming monsoon the situation is going to further worsened. Information also reveals that as many as 20 districts in Haryana state witnessing overall decline in the water level covering nearly 76% area of the state which include Panchkula, Ambala, Yamunanagar, Kurukshetra, Kaithal, Karnal, Panipat, Sonipat, Jind, Fatehabad, Sirsa, Hisar, Bhiwani, Charkhi Dadri, Mahendragarh, Rewari, Gurugram, Mewat, Faridabad and Palwal districts.

In order to bring relief to the people in the state, Haryana state government has prepared as many as 22 welfare schemes including minor irrigation schemes this year aiming to complete these welfare schemes by June 2024. The issue of fast declining underground water in the state was widely discussed during recent Haryana budget 2023-24 as such amount worth Rs 6598 crore was approved in this budget for the improvement of irrigation and water management system in the state, which is 29.2% higher as compared to last year budget. Apart from this, amount worth Rs 101 crore was reserved for construction of SYL canal in the state. Information also reveals that there  are 7287 villages in Haryana state which include 3041 villages facing water shortage, of these the situation in 1948 villages is alarming adversely affecting agriculture. According to a spokesperson of agriculture department, the state government has constituted as many as 97 schemes for the storage as well as re-use of waste water, especially in the areas facing severe shortage of water which include area in Rohtak, Jhajjar, Hisar, Bhiwani, Jind, Charkhi Dadri, Fatehabad, Palwal, Nuh and Sonipat districts. He told that state government in order to promote minor irrigation working on 22 schemes at present likely to be completed before month June 2024.  He further added that sugarcane crop is being cultivated in nearly 2.5 lakh acre area in the state at present for which flood irrigation system is being introduced in the state to increase production of the sugar which will also enhance production of sugar in the state.