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Some crops requires large amount of water to grow (photo by: Vmenkov, wikimedia)

production of such crops should be banned permanently which are consuming Ganga water highly.

 

Recently, former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav has accused the central government that only committees are being formed to protect the cleanliness of Ganga and no real work is going on. We welcome this statement of Mulayam Singh Yadav. But it is also true that most of the water of the river Ganga is removed for irrigation by UP, which was ruled by his son for the last five years.

Some crops require very high amount of water for cultivation such as sugarcane, mentha etc. This is mentioned in the combined  Report(page7, para1) of IITs:

“High population growth, rising per capita income and increase in standard of living of people, have encouraged the farmers to diversify agriculture towards high water intensive crops such as sugarcane, paddy and wheat which put more stress on the water resources.”

Geographical Delineation of the Portion of Ganga River Basin Considered Significant from Agriculture and Irrigation (agricultural overview prepared by Indian IITs)

 

In the given picture, we can see that Uttar Pradesh has the largest area irrigated by the Ganga. We can see in the bar graph below that from 1962 to 2006, the highest irrigation in the Ganga river basin has happened in Uttar Pradesh only.

trends in gross irrigated area across states in Ganga River Basin 1962-2006 (agricultural overview prepared by Indian IITs)

 

Below we can see the production of the sugarcane (high water consumption crop) from 1950 to 2008 is much higher than other crops, for which the most of the water is taken from River Ganga.

 

Trends in production of major crops, Uttar Pradesh, 1950-51 to 2007-08 (agricultural overview prepared by Indian IITs)

 

Growing such crops is the main reason for removing large quantities of water from the Ganga Water. How can River Ganga will be saved then? Ganga can be saved only, when there will be complete ban on the cultivation of water-guzzling crops like sugarcane and mentha. Then the less water will be taken by us from the Ganga and then river will be alive.

After coming in power, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that “now we don’t have to take anything from Ganga we have only to give Ganga.” In keeping with these wonderful statements, we urge Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi Ji that the crops, which are consuming excessive amount of Ganga Water, should not be cultivated in the Ganga River Basin so that the loss of Ganga water will be reduced and the existence of Ganga River will be saved.

 


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