India is already water-stressed and is heading towards becoming a water-scarce country with depleting per capita availability of water, Madhya Pradesh Public Health Minister Sukhdev Panse has said. He was speaking at a summit organized by his department and the Piramal Foundation on `implementation of effective solutions to enable the sustainability of water resources' Tuesday.
"A country is classified as water-stressed and water- scarce if per capita water availability goes below 1,700 cubic meters and 1,000 cubic meters, respectively," the minister said. "With 1,544 cubic meters per capita availability, India is already a water-stressed country and is moving towards becoming water-scarce," Panse said.
"Apart from the promotion of water conservation efforts for water resources availability and groundwater recharge, there should be an effective water management system linked with the performance of local level water institutions," he said. Anuj Sharma, CEO of Piramal Sarvajal, a water conservation initiative of Piramal Foundation, noted that India has 17 per cent of the world's population but only 4 per cent of the world's freshwater resources.
Due to inefficient water resource management system and climate change, India faces persistent water shortage and the need of the hour is to implement solutions that can make safe drinking water easily available to all, Sharma said.
(With inputs from agencies.)