Soon comprehensive census of waterbodies to be held in state
Kolkata: The state Water Resources Investigation and Development Department (WRIDD) will soon undertake Minor Irrigation Census (MIC) to have a comprehensive figure of the waterbodies in the entire state.The exercise will be conducted by the State Water Investigation Directorate (SWID) that comes under the aegis of the WRIDD and is responsible for carrying out investigation along with a quantitative and qualitative assessment of water resources in the state. This is for the first time when the census will include even the surface waterbodies like very small pools of water. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal life”The aim behind the move is to have a concise data for sensible and logical planning when it comes to using water for irrigation. We cannot deny the fact that groundwater level is depleting and we feel that it is high time to take measures to prevent indiscriminate extraction of groundwater,” a senior official of the WRIDD department said. It may be mentioned that Minor Irrigation covers all waterbodies that include an area less than 2000 hectare. It excludes all the river systems like Teesta, Damodar, Kansabati, Mayurakshi that comes under the category of Major Irrigation. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killed”We have already forwarded our budget proposal to the Centre for undertaking the MIC. We are waiting for the approval. The census will begin as soon as we get the nod and our target is to complete the study within a period of one year,” the official added. According to the official, as many as 25 to 30 types of waterbodies including tube wells will be covered under the MIC. SWID is also in the process of preparing a scientific database to curb indiscriminate groundwater extraction. The Directorate will classify all the 341 blocks in the state into three categories — critical, semi-critical and safe and accordingly prepare a roadmap for scientific use of groundwater in the near future. Apart from designating blocks based on the three parameters, the state government will also come out with a direction for the agencies about how much water extraction will be allowed for agriculture or industry purposes.