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Union Joint Secretary Engages with Pani Samitis, Schools & District Administration During 3-Day Visit to J-K's Doda

The visit of Union Joint Secretary Angshuman Dey and Scientist Gargee Sharma served to reinforce these objectives in the Doda district of Jammu and Kashmir.

Shivam Dwivedi
Union Joint Secretary Engages with Pani Samitis, Schools & District Administration During 3-Day Visit to J-K's Doda (Photo Source: Pexels)
Union Joint Secretary Engages with Pani Samitis, Schools & District Administration During 3-Day Visit to J-K's Doda (Photo Source: Pexels)

Angshuman Dey, Union Joint Secretary of the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region and Central Nodal Officer for Jal Shakti Abhiyan (JSA)- Catch the Rain (CTR), along with Gargee Sharma, Scientist D and member of Jal Shakti Abhiyaan, concluded their three-day visit to the Doda district of Jammu and Kashmir on Saturday.

The purpose of their visit was to assess the implementation of the Jal Shakti Abhiyan and promote water conservation efforts in the region. Throughout their visit, Dey and Sharma engaged in extensive interactions with various stakeholders, including students, teachers, BDC Chairpersons, DDC Councillors, sarpanches, panches, Pani Simitis, and members of the local community. They also visited Water Supply Schemes and inspected related infrastructure under the Jal Jeevan Mission.

On the final day of their visit, the officials inspected various water-related facilities, such as GSRs (Groundwater Storage and Recharge Structures), FHTCs (Functional Household Tap Connections), gravity lines, filter plants, and other infrastructure. They met with panchayat members at Dhar Chobia Village and also toured Jai Valley.

Union Joint Secretary Angshuman Dey conducted a comprehensive assessment of the program's crucial aspects and reviewed its implementation in the district. He commended the district administration and other stakeholders for their efforts in effectively executing the Jal Shakti Abhiyan. Dey also took the opportunity to visit significant water sources, including Amrit Sarovar, streams, rivers, forests, and Jai Valley. As part of his visit, he launched a plantation drive at Bhalla tehsil of Bhaderwah sub-district.

During their interactions, the officials emphasized the importance of water conservation, judicious water usage, protection of water sources, and rainwater harvesting. They encouraged the local communities and Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs) to incorporate water conservation plans within various developmental schemes. Furthermore, they stressed the need for wider publicity and awareness campaigns regarding the significance of rainwater harvesting and its techniques. Union Joint Secretary Dey also initiated a unique campaign called "Mai Be Pani Champion" among students. The campaign aims to motivate students to share their stories and activities related to water conservation under the Catch the Rain initiative.

Vishesh Mahajan, the District Development Commissioner of Doda, presented a detailed report on the district administration's efforts to harvest rainwater and recharge groundwater. Mahajan highlighted that all building constructions within the municipal limits of Doda, Bhaderwah, and Thathri have been mandated to implement rainwater harvesting mechanisms. Additionally, soakage pits have been constructed near rural households under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) during the previous financial year.

Mahajan mentioned that extensive awareness campaigns are being conducted in schools through Prabhari Officers to instill water conservation habits among students. Furthermore, the district administration established 85 Amrit Sarovar (sacred ponds) last year, and the goal is to construct one Amrit Sarovar in each of the 237 panchayats of the district during the current financial year.

It was also revealed that the district has successfully restored 1021 water bodies through the collaborative efforts of various departments, including RDD, IWMP, Jal Shakti, Horticulture, Agriculture, and Forest departments. Moreover, the district aims to restore an additional 792 water bodies this year, while also geo-tagging all 492 water bodies in Doda.

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