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India Water Week - 2017

The Fifth India Water Week 2017 was inaugurated by the Hon'ble President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind on October 10, 2017 in New Delhi. This annual policy and technology showcase event is organised by the Ministry of Water Resources, River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation, Government of India. It is an annual forum where the Ministry of Water Resources, RD&GR, Government of India discusses, talks, strategizes with eminent stakeholders through seminars, exhibitions and sessions to build public awareness, to get support to implement key strategies for conservation, preservation and optimum use of available water.

While speaking at the inauguration of the event, the Hon'ble President said that currently, 80 per cent of water in India is used by agriculture and only 15 per cent by industry. In the coming years, this ratio will change. The total demand for water will also rise. Efficiency of water use and reuse, therefore, has to be built into the blueprint of industrial projects. Business and industry also need to be a part of the solution. He also said that water is essential to life. It is fundamental to the economy and to ecology — and to human equity. The issue of water is becoming still more critical in view of climate change and related environmental concerns. Better and more efficient use of water is a challenge for Indian agriculture and industry alike. It requires us to set new benchmarks in both our villages and in the cities we build. He said that, 40 billion litres of waste water is produced every day in urban India. It is vital to adopt technology to reduce the toxic content of this water, and to deploy it for irrigation and other purposes. This has to be part of any urban planning programme.

The President urged a water management approach that is localised. He stated that it should empower village and neighbourhood communities and build their capacity to manage, allocate and value their water resources. Any 21st century water policy must factor in the concept of the value of water. It must encourage all stakeholders, including communities, to expand their minds — and to graduate from allocating a quantum of water to allocating a quantum of benefits. The government has prepared a strategic plan for ensuring drinking water supply in all rural areas by 2022, when India complete 75 years of Independence. By that year the goal is to cover 90 per cent of rural households with piped water supply. We cannot fail. The deliberations of this conference have to ensure that we do not fail. The event witnessed the participation in the discussions by various international delegates from the European Union countries, as well as their Indian counterparts. Also present were Union Ministers of the concerned Ministries.

The President, Shri Ram Nath Kavind lighting the lamp to inaugurate the India Water Week- 2017 in New Delhi on October 10,0 2017 Also seen are Union Minister for Road Transport & Highways, Shipping and Water Resources, River Development & Gang Rejuvenation, Shri Nitin Gadkarl; the Union Minister for Drinking Water & Sanitation, Sushri Uma Bharti; the Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs, Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, Shri Arjun Ram Meghwal and the State for Human Resource Development and Water Resources, River Development and Minister.