participatory irrigation management in development support centre

Experiences of PIM in Gujarat State and Future
Mohan Sharma, DSC Ahmedabad
Irrigation scenario in Gujarat
• Has 18 Major, 90 Medium and more than 5000
MI projects creating about 17 lakh Ha irrigation
• In addition, Sardar Sarovar Project has a
command area of 18.45 lakh Ha and others with
about 4 lakh Ha.
• Thus about 40 lakh hectares in the State will get
assured irrigation @ 36% of the agricultural area
• Various studies revealed deficiencies in the
planning & irri. Mgm. in varying degree
Evolution of PIM in Gujarat
The WRD has been promoting and facilitating PIM in
step by step manner;
1995 Landmark policy Resolution welcoming
participation of farmers’ organizations and NGOs
in management of Government irrigation
1995 – 2000 WRD issued series of Orders for
facilitating PIM in the State.
2007 -Enactment of the “Gujarat Water Users
Participatory Irrigation Management Act”
2010-12- Govt. notified Rules and regulations for
implementing the PIM Act
Evolution of PIM, continue…
-WALMI developed self performance
monitoring system for WUAs
 -WALMI-NGO collaboration for
accelerating PIM capacity building
Salient features of PIM Act;
effective from 17/9/2007.
• Statutory support to the combined efforts of
Water Resources Dept, farmers and NGOs.
• Declaration of Minor Canal Service Area by
notification in the official gazette.
• Formation of WUA for each Minor Canal
Service Area if the association represents
51% of the holders with 51% of Service Area.
• Recognition of WUA by the SE
• Agreement to turnover Irrigation management
• Repairs as per joint inspection shall be done by
WUA with 10% contribution from Association.
• Supply of water from Minor Canal on Volumetric
bases (per watering crop area basis).
• Association is allowed to collect water charges
over and above rates fixed by Govt. as may be
• Association receives 50% rebate in water rate
towards water rate collection and cost of O & M
of canals and administration
Progress of WUAs
About 9000 WUAs will be formed in the State to
manage about 40 lakh hectares command area
Till December 2013 about 4000 WUAs has been
formed in Major-Medium projects covering 6.2 lakh
Ha. area including 4.7 lakh in major-medium projects
and 1.5 lakh Ha in SSNNL project
The State has developed many modal and self
sufficient WUAs that serve as demonstration
Functions of WUAs
Irrigation management
Provide available water to individual farmer in time
 System management
Operation and maintenance of canal
 Finance management
Prepare budget, fixing and recover water charges
from the Users and paying dues to the Govt.
 Social management
Resolving conflict between farmers
 Productivity enhancement
Special features of WUAs in North
Gujarat Projects
Prepare annual budget ( Income and
Expenditure), deciding water charges
 Regular O&M of canals
 100 % water charge recoveries
including additional water charges
 Farmers have paid up to 10% cash
contribution in canal rehabilitation
 Rules and regulations of WUAs
 Penalty to offenders (double to office
bearers in some cases)
Special features of WUAs contd.
Promotion of Farmers’ Spearhead Teams.
Pilots on volumetric supply of water and water
use efficiency
Federating at the Branch/Project level
Impact of PIM
Direct Benefits
- Increase in area through canals – 30% - 55%
- Decrease in irrigation through ground water –
20% - 40%
- Decrease in water expenses – Rs 800/hect –
Rs 2000/hec
- Increase in net income – Rs 7500/hect – Rs
- Increase in milch animal population – 100 –
- Increase in milk production – 2- 5
Benefits contd.
Increase in employment generation – 4.75
mandays/hect/year which amounts to Rs
Indirect benefits
- More no. of days available for landless farmers –
about 10 - 25 labour days/year/village
- Decrease in time spent on irrigation – 15 labour
- Conflict resolution
Benefit cost ratio
Thus BCR was found to be in the range of 1.3
to 4.5 respectively.
Problems being faced by WUAs
The WUAs face difficulties in running old canal
system without rehabilitation.
Technical sanctions, release of grant for canal
rehabilitation get delayed by Dept.
There is no proper mechanism for financial audit
of the WUAs and therefore the WUA office bearers
and canal officers face administrative problems
The WUAs face difficulties in controlling illegal
lifting of canal water and tube well irrigation
The office bearers and paid staff of WUAs don’t
get timely training/ refresher training
Problems being faced by WUAs
Proper water measuring structures are not
available with willing WUAs for monitoring
the water use and farmers training.
 The WUAs don’t have office facilities
particularly at the level of their federation
Problems being faced by NGO and GO
The WALMI and ID have staff crunch for
supporting PIM activities such as training,
technical support and performance monitoring
of WUAs
The existing package of incentive to NGOs for
supporting WUA has not been revised for a long
time therefore the reputed NGOs hesitate for
large scale WUA promotion.
The progress of PIM coverage is slow but steady
due to adoption of voluntary approach
The farmers from water surplus areas don’t
cooperate in formation and running WUAs
Problems being faced by NGO and GO
The canal officers are overloaded with
construction and office administration work
due to under staffing therefore they are not
in position to support the WUAs for
meeting, construction work and irrigation
 The farmers of water surplus areas don’t
come forward for PIM while the WUAs of
water deficit areas are not able to irrigate
designed command areas.
Lessons Learnt
Gujarat has been a role model for the
White Revolution in the country through
Amul Cooperative . Now it can lead the
country for PIM revolution through
Dharoi model of PIM – Professor Kirit
Parikh, Ex. Member Planning
Commission GoI
Policies that give autonomy, incentives and powers
to the WUAs
Stakeholders give importance to the process of
Institution Development
Capacity building and hand-holding for Min. 3-5 working years
of preparation, formation, growth and autonomy:
 Formation
 Rehabilitation
 Water Distribution
 Management – financial, programmes and human resources
Learning based monitoring and timely resolution of issues by ID
Leadership development
Resource Allocation
This would require Rs 2000/ha for
promoting PIM and Rs 5000/ha for canal
rehabilitation for a period of 10-12 years in
the state.
Scaling up
Recommended Future Strategy
The time has now come to translate the intention
into practice and that too at a scale from 6 lakh
to 30 lakh hectares with about 9000 WUAs
Quite challenging task
Different Typology and PIM
Surface Irrigation
System (Public)
Water table
& source
Water logging, need
drainage, land
high tailend
deprivation, low
water demand,
introduce drip
recharge, increase
command area
high tailend
deprivation, water
harvesting, ground
water recharge,
Physical System
Good condition Deteriorated
Community & homogenous/dyna PIM likely to
canal rehab, PIM
difficult but possible
intensive efforts
for community
,encourage new
PIM very
difficult,+++ inputs in
physical system &
com. mob
Institutional arrangements and resource
 Collaboration of WRD, competent NGOs
and Academic – Research Institutions .
 It would also mean setting up of a PIM Cell
within the WRD as done by the Gujarat
State Watershed Management Agency for
promoting IWMP.
 A dedicated cell for social engineering and
institution development could be thought
off within the department looking to
increasing demand of water/ social
managers .
Way Forward
Key Recommendations from the World Bank Study on Sustainable
Development of WUAs in India (2010) and experiences of DSC in
capacity building in watershed management and PIM:
For WUA development and support
Form a National PIM Committee with representatives of 10
States with the largest area served by WUAs.
Establish a national concept, approach and acceptance of PIM
openly supported by state governments.
Require different strategies for different physical and social
Formulate, fund and implement a National PIM programme
based on tried and tested PIM principles and practices. This
would include conjunctive use of ground water, lift irrigation and
agriculture development.
All future irrigation projects funded through AIBP funding would
include the National PIM program as a key element.
National PIM Programme
A legal framework that provides autonomy for the organizations;
A step-by-step process of formation of the organizations;
Facilitating capacity building, training and support mechanisms of
ID staff members and WUAs, DCs and PCs including developing
appropriate IEC materials and training modules .
Establishing State-wide PIM Support Units with Field Training
Centres with funding for atleast 10 years.
Strengthening WALMIs and include them as a key resource for
training in PIM and water management (including maintenance).
Selecting few competent and committed NGOs (as done in Gujarat)
in each state and provide funding on the lines similar to that of the
watershed programme. (Rs 7500/ha – Rs 5000/ha for canal rehab
by WUAs, Rs 1000 for Awareness and Cap. Bldg & Rs 1000 for HR
& Adm.)
Allowing WUAs to set, collect and manage service fees.
Separating WUA governance and management
Allocating water rights/entitlements to WUAs/water users

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