New Delhi, Oct 28: India is home to 17 percent of the global population but has only four percent of water resource, and so it is vital to focus on water use efficiency, President Pranab Mukherjee said Monday.
Speaking at the India Water Forum here, Mukherjee said due to the population expansion, rapid urbanization and developmental needs, there had been tremendous pressure on water availability in the country.
“As we grapple with diminishing water resources and escalating water demand, water use efficiency holds great promise,” he said.
The president said that in the past, focus was laid primarily on augmenting the quantity of water available without giving due attention to the manner in which the water will be used or managed.
“A paradigm shift from water resource development to integrated water resource management is now necessary,” he said.
Mukherjee said the National Water Policy 2012 recognized the need to improve efficiency in the use of water resources.
“The improvement of water use efficiency requires innovative tools of promotion and incentives for efficient water utilization.
“At the same time, it calls for dealing with inefficient water consumption through disincentives and stricter regulation.”
The president said that agriculture was a big demand centre for water and water management in this sector was therefore crucial for the overall sustainability of the country’s water resource.
The three-day event will see experts from India and abroad discuss policy measures, methods and strategies to involve people to ensure water security.