Odisha among top seven states in water body revival efforts

The study by the New Delhi-based Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) found Odisha met the target by restoring and constructing more than 75 Amrit Sarovars in each of its 30 districts.
Representative image
Representative image

BHUBANESWAR: Odisha has done a good job in rejuvenation of natural water bodies like lakes and ponds and is ranked among the top seven states in implementing impactful programmes in the field of water conservation, a latest study has found.

The study by New Delhi-based Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) documented the implementation of Mission Amrit Sarovar, launched in April 2022 with the objective to conserve water, across the country. Under this mission, every district of the country was given the mandate to restore or construct 75 ponds, thus marking the 75th year of Independence. The aim was to rejuvenate or construct 50,000 water bodies.

The study found Odisha met the target by restoring and constructing more than 75 Amrit Sarovars in each of its 30 districts. While Uttar Pradesh topped the list with 16,909 water bodies, at least 2,367 water bodies were developed in Odisha against the target of 2,250.

Other states that have completed their targets are Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh. One of the reasons for Odisha achieving the high rate of completion was mainly due to an existing local scheme ‘Mo Pokhari’ to revive water bodies.

Under the Amrit Sarovar scheme, the highest 91 ponds have been revived or created in Balangir district, 88 each in Ganjam and Bargarh, 84 in Nabarangpur, 83 each in Rayagada and Sambalpur, 81 each in Kandhamal, Malkangiri and Sundargarh. Similarly, 80 water bodies each have been developed in Balasore, Puri and Jharsuguda. Barring Deogarh, which has created 65 water bodies, 10 short of the target, all other districts have rejuvenated 75 or more water bodies.

The organisation also reviewed water bodies created and/or restored under 26 government programmes and schemes in different ecological regions of the country. As per the latest water bodies census, Odisha with 1,81,837 water bodies is ranked fourth in the country after West Bengal (7.47 lakh), Uttar Pradesh (2.45 lakh) and Andhra Pradesh (1.9 lakh). Balasore district has the highest 16,804 water bodies, followed by 15,986 in Mayurbhanj, 12,509 in Kendrapara, 9,808 in Puri, 9,760 in Nabarangpur, 8,912 in Keonjhar, 8,632 in Ganjam, 8,334 in Bhadrak and 7,957 in Jagatsinghpur.

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