The Paradox of Promises, Priorities and Provisions for Water in Budget (2019-20)

The budget has not provided an increase in the allocation for the Jal Shakti Ministry.  In fact the Finance Minister has said that the funds under CAMPA will be utilised for undertaking groundwater recharge. CAMPA is a fund which is created from the contributions by hydropower and other developers for the cutting of forests for development purpose. The basic purpose of CAMPA is re-establishment of forests. So firstly, it is incorrect to rely upon CAMPA for groundwater recharge. Secondly even if we accept this approach, the procedure under CAMPA is very detailed and complicated. Huge amounts of money are lying unutilised in CAMPA and as a result it is unlikely that groundwater recharge will get a push and that the water scarcity in the country will be reduced in the coming time.

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