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HindustanTimes Sun,21 Sep 2014

Need to work together for ensuring water availability, conservation: Patil

HT Correspondent , Hindustan Times  Chandigarh, December 20, 2013
First Published: 20:01 IST(20/12/2013) | Last Updated: 20:03 IST(20/12/2013)

The industry, government and society, all need to collaborate to ensure availability of required quantities of water for drinking and irrigation purposes in the region, said UT administrator Shivraj Patil, while addressing the Water Conclave organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) at its office in Sector 31, here on Friday.

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“Industry and agriculture are the two major consumers of water, so innovative and dynamic models of water management and collaboration under the public and private partnership (PPP) model should be implemented in both the areas to change the present scenario of water shortages,” he said.

“While the governments should look for alternatives to the traditional canal irrigation system and work towards implementing computerised tube irrigation system in fields, as in Israel, the industry needs to invest in research and development. This will not only help conserve water, but also enhance crop quality,” said Patil.

“The water sector has immense potential for the industry to invest in, grow and expand, as these hi-tech products can be sold to governments and agriculturists,” he said.

He called for developing techniques and equipment for desalinating saline water for domestic, agricultural and industrial usage. He also shared information regarding the water purification system used in the Lakshadweep islands, in which saline water is made fit for consumption by using the difference in ocean water temperature near the sea bed and its subsequent layers.

Speaking on rainwater harvesting, he said, “In a country like India, where Western and Eastern Ghats receive favourable rain, industry should come forward for constructing more dams for harvesting rainwater and barricading its flow into oceans. At the same time, we need to resolve inter-state water disputes to turn various river-connecting projects into a reality.”

Patil also released a paper on 'Water Sector Investment Opportunities in Northern States and New Technologies and Case Studies' prepared by the CII and CII-Triveni Water Institute.

VK Singh, UT finance secretary-cum-secretary of engineering and urban planning and development, said, “We need new water tariff policy that incentivises water saving and treatment projects and takes a greater share from major consumers of water, which is the industry. We also need to encourage development of more tertiary water treatment plants.”

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