India: Aimed at increasing agricultural productivity in the state, the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh has launched the UP Water Sector Restructuring Project. The Rs 3,090-crore project will play a significant role in alleviating extreme poverty. To be executed with the help of an interest-free loan of Rs 2,160 crore from the World Bank, the project will rehabilitate and modernise existing irrigation systems and increase community participation through water user associations.
The project will focus on using modern technology like satellite remote sensing, GIS, and mobile-based applications to monitor and evaluate project design. The government has also roped in the UP Remote Sensing Applications Centre to monitor the performance of project agriculture areas using satellite imageries. It will include a specialised flood management information system (FMIS) as more than 30% of the total geographical area in 23 districts of UP is flood-prone. The project is expected to assist nearly 10 lakh farmer families through better infrastructure. It will also strengthen over 22,000 water users associations. “Improvements in water use efficiency will not only help the agriculture sector, the largest consumer of water in India, but also address the growing mismatch between water demands and use patterns, a critical problem that cuts across many development challenges in UP, and India more generally,” said Onno Ruhl, Country director of World Bank.
Source: Times of India