Union Minister stresses on recycling industrial water

Chennai: Water from various industries like sugar, paper and tannery could be recycled and put to use for power generation and agriculture, said Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways, Shipping and Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, Nitin Gadkari.

He was speaking about the innovative ways of recycling water during the inauguration of international consultation on ‘Water: Augmentation of Supply and Management of Demand’ organised by M S Swaminathan Research Foundation (MSSRF) on its premises here on Tuesday.

Water availability is not an issue in the country, however there is a need to focus on water management, he said and added that water scarcity is seen only in 11 States.

The Minister said there is a need to diversify the crop patterns. “We can
move from wheat, sugarcane and rice and focus on cultivating oil seeds. This will help a lot as India imports about 70 per cent of its edible oil,” he said.
MSSRF founder-chairman M S Swaminathan said water is a community asset which has now turned into commercial.

He also reminded about schemes like ‘Kudimaramathu’ of Tamilnadu and ‘Pani Panchayat’ of Maharashtra which aimed chiefly at water conservation and suggested that there is a need to revitalise them.

NABARD chairman Harsh Kumar Bhanwala said inter linking of rivers must be taken up to ensure availability of water across the year. Karnataka Minister for Agriculture N H Shivashankara Reddy said their government laid stress on harnessing the rainwater and added that they have constructed over two lakh farm ponds in the State under Krishi Bhagya Scheme.