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Agriculture

Mission Paani: The dark zone of Karnal

Updated : August 09, 2019 12:55 PM IST

Mission Paani is a Network 18 Initiative where we get you stories of people and organizations who have led from the front on water conservation and have in the process inspired others.

Straight from the village of Karnal which is in the dark zone. And no- that's not a sci-fi term. Dark zones are areas where groundwater levels deplete faster than they recharge. Rainwater harvesting is the only solution. For farmers, a subsidy is necessary to set up at least one recharge bore.

Karnal's Ramana Ramani village is one of the 7 blocks in the dark zone. Groundwater levels here were depleting faster than they recharged. But farmers have managed to reverse that trend by setting up rainwater harvesting and recycling systems. The harvested water is stored and pumped through hand pumps and bore wells. Farmers want the government to give them a 50 percent subsidy to set up systems on all farms.

Balwinder Singh is training other farmers in setting up a water recharge system, the cheapest and simplest way to replenish groundwater.

Borewells can be recharged with water harvested from ponds, drains or rivers. The recharge also prevents crop damage due to flooding.
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