NEW DELHI: Rajya Sabha MPs Monday raised the issue of a growing drinking water crisis in different parts of the country and demanded immediate interventions such as inter-linking of rivers and rainwater harvesting to recharge the groundwater table.
Raising the issue through a Zero Hour mention, Satyanarayan Jatiya (BJP) said parts of Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Maharashtra and Karnataka have traditionally faced water crisis but now the problem has extended to fresh areas.
"There has to be a permanent solution to drinking water crisis," he said, suggesting five big river inter-linking projects need to be taken up on a priority so as to make available excess water of one area to deficit regions.
Ashok Bajpai (BJP) said a NITI Aayog report has stated that there will be a water crisis in parts of the country next year.
While Rewati Raman Singh (SP) said a solution to the water crisis was to be found urgently, Saroj Pandey (BJP) stated that public awareness needs to be created on rainwater harvesting so that impending monsoon rains can be used to recharge the groundwater table.
Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu said the issue raised is important and he is willing to allow a short discussion on the issue if notice for a short duration or call attention is given.
He advised members to consult amongst themselves and give such a notice.
T Subbarami Reddy (Cong) raised the issue of the rising population with India projected to overtake China as the world's most populous country in the coming years.
He demanded that incentives and disincentives should be formulated to promote family planning.
Noting that the rise in population is putting a burden on the environment, economy and giving rise to unemployment, he said without incentives and disincentives population cannot be controlled.