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Two schemes of RRR of water bodies approved

Two state sector schemes for Repair, Renovation and Restoration (RRR) of water bodies have been approved by the Government of India, according to a statement released recently by the Ministry of Water Resources.

The first one with external assistance with an outlay of Rs. 1500 crore and another with domestic support with an outlay of Rs. 1250 crore for implementation during the XI Plan period. The state governments are required to prepare Detailed Project Reports (DPRs) for RRR of water bodies identified by them as per the guidelines issued by the Union Ministry of Water Resources, in this regard. Under the scheme with domestic support, projects benefitting special category states, undivided Koraput, Bolangir and Kalahandi (KBK) districts of Orissa and drought prone/naxal affected/tribal areas of other states are eligible for 90% of the project cost as central assistance. Other projects are eligible for 25% of the project cost as central assistance. Under the scheme with external assistance, the Union Government provides central assistance to the extent of 25% of the project cost whereas 75% state share is to be borrowed from the World bank by the concerned states.
The main objectives of the scheme are:
1. Comprehensive improvement of water bodies including restoration.
2. Improvement of catchment area of water bodies.
3. Community participation and self-supporting system for sustainable management for water bodies covered by the programme.
4. Ground Water Recharge.
5. Capacity Building of communities, user groups, standing committee for Panchayats and State Government/Central Government Agencies concerned with the planning, implementation and monitoring of the project.
6. Increase in storage capacity of water bodies.
7. Improvement in agriculture/horticulture productivity.
8. Environmental benefits through improved water use efficiency
9. Irrigation benefits through restoration of water bodies.
10. Promotion of conjunctive use of surface and ground water.
11. Development of tourism, cultural activities, etc.
12. Increased availability of drinking water.

Regular monitoring of the project is to be carried out at each stage. Monitoring has to include the maintaining of both physical and financial progress and the outcome. Monitoring will be done with the association of the standing committee of the Panchayat at the appropriate level. The Water User Associations (WUAs) are to play an active role in the planning, implementation, supervision, maintenance of water body systems and other necessary activities.

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