Connect with us

Yuvika Chaudhary – Prince Narula Wedding Gallery

Published

on

Click to comment


Advertisement

Holy Scriptures

Significance of Panchamrit or Panchamrutham

Published

on


Spread the love
Read Time: 3 minutes

Panchamrit or Panchamrutham is a combination of five ingredients, namely, Milk, Curd, Honey, Jaggery, and Ghee), typically offered to God during Hindu rituals. The word Panchamrita is derived from two words – ‘Pancha’ means five, and ‘Amrita’ is a mythical beverage of immortality. Panchamrit is a very essential ingredient in most of the Hindu Poojas and considered as holy and sacred. Once it is offered to God during a Pooja, it is then distributed amongst the devotees as a Prasad.

According to Ayurvedic science, the five ingredients of Panchamrit offer a lot of health benefits. Here are some of the important Ayurvedic Panchamrit Health Benefits.

  1. Nourishes the skin and keeps it Healthy and Glowing
  2. Keeps Hair Healthy
  3. Boosts Immunity
  4. Improves Physical Strength
  5. Vitalizes the Brain Functions
  6. Balances Pitta Dosha
  7. Improves Sexual Potency in Males
  8. Good to have During Pregnancy

Mythological Symbolic significance of the Five Ingredients Used in Panchamrit.

Milk is a symbol of holiness and purity

According to Ayurveda, the cow’s milk used to make Panchamrit offers a cooling effect on the body and the mind. It improves Ojas i.e. a factor responsible for immunity. Regular consumption of cow milk rejuvenates body inside out by nourishing the tissues. It also helps provides strength.

Curd / Yogurt is a symbol of prosperity and better living

It is said that curd also offers a cooling effect on the body, which improves the digestive health and balances Vata Dosha. As per Ayurveda, yogurt is the only ‘fermented’ food recognized as Sattvic.

Honey is a symbol of sweet speech and unity since it is prepared by bees together

According to Ayurveda, honey is beneficial for those having a weak digestive system. It also enhances skin tone and its softness. It is is an easily digestible food and gets dissolved directly into the bloodstream when consumed. This is why many ayurvedic medicines are advised to be taken with honey.

Jaggery is a symbol of sweetness and bliss

Jaggery has a cooling effect on the body and many other health benefits. It is a good chemical free substitute for the regular refined sugar we use at home.

Ghee is a symbol of victory and knowledge

Ayurveda says consumption of Ghee offers a wide range of benefits, including clarity of mind, nutrition, and good digestion.

According to the science of Ayurveda, when these five ingredients are combined together, they improve and enhance the Gunas or the good qualities of each other.

Continue Reading

Exercise & Fitness

Natural Birth Control Methods

Published

on


Spread the love
Read Time: 3 minutes

The methods that prevent pregnancy but are NOT due to any mechanical or hormone manipulation through any contraceptive are considered as natural methods of birth control. In fact, natural methods are nothing but specific actions by a couple to prevent unintended pregnancy.

For an effective natural birth control method, both man and woman must need to have a mutual consent for such a decision. These methods need discipline and self-control. These methods are some of the oldest forms of contraception available.

Abstinence

Abstinence is defined as the practice of restraining oneself from indulging in sexual intercourse or sex play with a partner.

Image result for Abstinence

This is the only method which is 100% effective in preventing pregnancy as well as sexually transmitted diseases. Opting for abstinence in a relationship should be a mutual decision by both man and woman. At times, it is difficult to practice it, however, your reasons for this choice makes it easier for you to stick to it.

Withdrawal

Withdrawal is a behavioral action by the man during sexual intercourse. In this method, the man is required to draw his organ out of the female organ before the ejaculation i.e the moment when semen begins to spurt out of the male organ.

Related image

This may not be a super reliable method for a couple of reasons. First, a man when aroused ejects pre-ejaculate fluid, which may contain at least 300,000 sperm. If by any chance, this is released into the vagina, there is possibility fertilization. On the other hand, this method relies on complete self-control and exact sense of timing to withdraw in time.

Fertility Awareness Methods

This method requires a woman to monitor her body to determine the most fertile period i.e. ovulation time. Then the couple should avoid unprotected intercourse during the ovulation period. This involves being alert to different body changes such as basal body temperature or cervical mucus. It should be recorded to predict the time of will ovulation. The couple must agree to not have intercourse for seven days before and two days after the ovulation.

Related image

The fertility awareness methods include the Billings Method, the Symptothermal Method, and the Standard Days Method. One can also use the Fertility Apps available on your mobile phone store to help you track your body’s changes.

Outercourse

Outercourse is referred to as any type of sexual play without sexual intercourse.

Related image

This includes erotic massage, kissing, manual stimulation, masturbation, rubbing against each other, fantasy, or other methods or toys used to attain orgasm.

Continuous Breastfeeding

Continuous breastfeeding or lactational amenorrhea method helps to postpone the ovulation for up to six months post-delivery. This method works due to the fact that the hormone required to stimulate milk production prevents the release of the hormone that triggers ovulation.

Image result for Continuous Breastfeeding Method of birth controlHowever, a couple should not rely on this method for more than six months or if the woman got her period since giving birth. Additionally, the lactational amenorrhea method is only effective when the woman feeds the baby at least six times a day or every four hours during the day and every six hours at night from both breasts.

How to overcome erectile dysfunction naturally.

Slight change in your Lifestyle can bring the spark back!!!

Continue Reading

Resources

Ozone Layer Depletion: Cause, Impact and Solution

Published

on


Spread the love
Read Time: 3 minutes

Ozone depletion refers to the gradual thinning of Earth’s ozone layer in the upper atmosphere. The primary reason for the ozone layer depletion is the release of chemical compounds that contain gaseous chlorine or bromine from various industries and other human activities. The thinning of the layer is most prominent in the Polar Regions, particularly over Antarctica.

Ozone depletion is a major environmental concern since it increases the amount of ultraviolet (UV) rays that reach the Earth’s surface. As a consequence, excess of UV rays increases the rate of eye cataracts, skin cancer, genetic and immune system disorders.

Impact on Human Health

Ozone layer depletion increases the rate of UVB penetration into the Earth’s atmosphere. According to epidemiological studies, UVB causes non-melanoma skin cancer and promotes malignant melanoma development. UVB is also linked to the development of cataracts commonly referred to as the clouding of the eye’s lens.

Impact on Flora

Some crops species are vulnerable to strong UV rays and overexposure to this radiation may inhibit plant growth, photosynthesis, and flowering. The vulnerable crop species include barley, corn, wheat, rice, oats, tomatoes, broccoli, and cauliflower among others.

Effects on Marine Ecosystems

Certain marine life, especially phytoplanktons is greatly affected by exposure to strong UV rays. As a consequence, a decrease in the number of phytoplanktons may disrupt the aquatic food chain in many ways. Further, certain species of marine life have been greatly impacted by overexposure to ultraviolet rays at a very early stage. For example, it has been observed that excess UV rays may disrupt early developmental stages of shrimp, fish, crab, amphibians, and other marine animals. The most adverse impact includes decreased reproductive ability and impaired larval development in aquatic animals. Slight increases in UVB exposure may result in population reductions for marine organisms with implications for the entire aquatic food chain.

Effects on Materials

Materials such as wood, plastics, fabrics, rubber are massively degraded by excess exposure to ultraviolet radiation.

Solutions to Ozone Layer Depletion

Avoid pesticides usage

Pesticides contribute enormously to ozone layer depletion. Therefore, pesticides should be avoided and natural methods should be implemented to get rid of pests and weeds. Some of the natural methods include weeding the farm manually and use of alternative eco-friendly chemicals to control pests.

Minimize vehicles on the road

Another easiest way to minimize ozone depletion is to limit the number of vehicles on the road. Vehicles emit a lot of greenhouse gases which in due course form smog, a catalyst in the depletion of the ozone layer.

Usage of eco-friendly cleaning agents

Most of the household cleaning agents are packed with harmful chemicals that find the route to the atmosphere, ultimately contributing to the degradation of the ozone layer. People should give up the usage of such chemicals and instead use natural and environmentally friendly cleaning agents.

Prohibition on the use of nitrous oxide

Another harmful compound responsible for ozone depletion is nitrous oxide. Governments must take action to outlaw nitrous oxide usage to reduce the rate of ozone depletion.

Continue Reading

Beverages

Healthy Yogurt Smoothies for Breakfast

Published

on


Spread the love
Read Time: 2 minutes
It is a well-known fact that yogurt is extremely nutritious and is a great source of protein, calcium, and potassium. It also offers numerous vitamins and minerals and is relatively low in calories.
Here are some recipes of yogurt smoothies that keep you energetic throughout the day, if taken in breakfast.

Breakfast Energy Drink

Breakfast Energy Drink

Ingredients:

  1. 2 cups orange juice
  2. 1 cup vanilla yogurt
  3. 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  4. 2 cups frozen berries (or mixed fresh)

Let’s shake it.

Put all ingredients into a blender.

Blend on high until it becomes smooth.

Serve and enjoy!

Good Morning Sunshine

Good Morning Sunshine

Ingredients:

  1. 1 cup frozen mango chunks
  2. 1 cup frozen pineapple pieces
  3. 1 frozen banana
  4. 1 cup fresh squeezed or bottled orange juice
  5. 1 cup plain non-fat Greek yogurt
  6. 1 tablespoon honey
  7. Assorted fresh berries for topping, optional

Let’s shake it.

Put all ingredients, except berries, into a blender

Process until it becomes smooth.

Pour into glasses and top it with fresh berries.

Strawberry Pomegranate Smoothie

Pomegranate Smoothie

Ingredients:

  1. 1 cup of water
  2. 2 tablespoons sugar
  3. 1 cup of frozen strawberries
  4. 2 pints nonfat frozen vanilla yogurt
  5. 4 Lipton white tea with blueberry & pomegranate flavor pyramid tea bag

Let’s shake it.

Pour boiling water over Lipton White Tea with Blueberry & Pomegranate Flavor Pyramid Tea Bags

Cover and brew 5 minutes. Then, remove the Tea Bags and squeeze.

Now, add sugar and stir until it gets dissolved. Keep it in the refrigerator to chill.

Process the tea mixture with remaining ingredients in a blender until it becomes smooth.

Then, serve immediately.

Homemade protein shakes for your fitness regime.

Make your natural protein shake at home

Continue Reading

Arts & Culture

Madhubani Paintings: A traditional form of Art from Bihar

Published

on


Spread the love
Read Time: 2 minutes

Originated in the Mithila region of Bihar, Madhubani art is practiced by using a variety of tools, such as twigs, brushes, nib-pens, matchsticks and even fingers. The paintings are characterized by remarkable geometrical patterns using natural dyes and pigments. Mithila paintings portray typical Indian rituals of particular occasions, such as marriage or birth, and the festivals, such as Holi, Kali Puja, Upanayana, and Durga Puja.

Traditionally, the paintings were done on freshly plastered mud walls and floors of huts. Now the paintings are also found on handmade paper, cloth, and canvas. Earlier, Madhubani paintings were made from the paste of powdered rice.

Madhubani art has five distinctive styles namely, Bharni, Tantrik, Katchni, Godna, and Kohbar. Earlier, in 1960s Bharni, Kachni and Tantrik art styles were primarily done by Brahmins and Kayashth women, who were considered as ‘upper caste’ women in India as well as Nepal. The themes of the paintings are used to be religious and depicted Gods and Goddesses, plants and animals. Similarly, lower caste people used to portray the aspects of their daily life and symbols, tales of Raja Shailesh and several other things, in their paintings. Nowadays Madhubani art has evolved as a globalized art form, so there is no caste discrimination exists in the work of artists. They display their talent in all five styles.

Image result for sita devi madhubani painting

In 1969, Madhubani paintings received official recognition, when Sita Devi was honored with the State award by Government of Bihar. Latter, Jagdamba Devi became the first artist from Mithila to receive a National Award in Mithila paintings.

Image result for sita devi and madhubani painting

Madhubani or Mithila painting has remained confined to a compact geographical area and the skills have been passed on through centuries, it has been accorded the coveted GI (geographical Indication) status.

Continue Reading

Beverages

Do you love Keventers? Try These Milkshakes at Home

Published

on


Spread the love
Read Time: 2 minutes

Keventers is an iconic brand which is best known for its refreshing and delicious milkshakes offered in many flavors. And if there is no Keventers outlet near your locality then you are missing a very big thing in your life. Therefore we present you some of the milkshake recipes you can make at your home. Trust me it tastes exactly like the Keventers.

Choco Peanut Butter

For peanut butter lovers, this is a treat to them. It is a very simple chocolaty shake with the strong essence of peanut butter.

All you need,

  1. 2 cups of chocolate ice cream
  2. 1 cup of milk
  3. 1/3 of a cup of peanut butter
  4. One cup of ice.

Pour the milk, peanut butter and ice into a blender and blend until it becomes smooth.

Then, add the chocolate ice cream and pulse until desired consistency

Serve chill and enjoy!

Mint Oreo Crumble

This one is a refreshing blend of mint with crushed Oreos. It is an amazing and rich flavored thick shake.

All you need,

  1. 1 1/2 cup Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream
  2. 8 Oreos
  3. 1 cup ice
  4. 1/2 cup milk

Take a blender and add the ice cream, milk, Oreos and ice altogether.

Whiz until well blended.

Serve chill and enjoy!

Kit-Kat Flavor

This one offers a nostalgia effect to those who love kit-kat. This shake has a delicious and nice texture and offers an amazing kit-kat flavor.

All you need,

  1. 1 Kit Kat bar (broken)
  2. 2 cups vanilla ice cream (or frozen yogurt)
  3. 1/2 cup milk
  4. 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  5. Hershey’s chocolate syrup

Put ice cream, milk, Kit Kat bar, and vanilla extract in a blender. Next, add chocolate syrup into it.

Blend until it becomes smooth.

Serve chill and enjoy!

Go Vegan – Let’s Make Vegan Protein Shakes

Continue Reading

Resources

SAVE WATER: It’s high time

Published

on


Spread the love
Read Time: 3 minutes

This is a well-known fact that water is essential for the existence of life on earth. Although we are surrounded by vast water bodies which account around three-fourth of the Earth’s surface, however freshwater on the earth accounts only 2.5% in the form of glaciers out of which only 1% is suitable for drinking. So it becomes necessary for us to save water and avoid its wastage.

Reason for Fresh Water Scarcity

The primary reason for water pollution is inappropriate waste management. Dumping of industrial waste materials into the water bodies on a regular basis is one of the major factors of freshwater getting polluted. Another factor for contamination of groundwater is the use of powerful pesticides and fertilizers in agriculture. Reckless usage of water and excess of water wastage have also reduced the accessibility of fresh and clean water.

Prevention of Water Scarcity

  1. Implementation of appropriate water management systems in the industries, buildings, school, apartments, and hospitals is necessary to ensure efficient usage of water so that no drop of it gets wasted.
  2. General awareness programs should be arranged for the common people to bring consciousness about the significance of water and methods of its usage in a limited amount without wasting it.
  3. Rainwater harvesting projects should be promoted in all areas so that rainwater can be used in various purposes and helps to stock up groundwater.

How to avoid wastage of water?

Here are some better ways to save water on a daily basis

  1. People should water their gardens and lawns only when they need water.
  2. Sprinkling water is a better way to save gallons of water per month as compared to watering the garden with the pipe.
  3. Keeping drought-resistant plants at home is another way to save water as these plants need less water.
  4. Leakage of plumbing joints or faucets or water taps should be fixed immediately. This actually saves around 20 gallons of water per day.
  5. For car or vehicle washing it is better to use a bucket and mug instead of a pipe. This may save up to 150 gallons of water from each wash.
  6. Showers bath saves much more water than bathing in a bathtub or even with a bucket.
  7. Fully loaded washing machines and dishwashers help in minimal usage of water and save around 300 to 800 gallons of water per month.
  8. Minimum usage of water per toilet also helps in saving more water on a daily basis.
  9. Washing vegetables and fruits in a water-filled container instead of washing under the running water save more water.
  10. Rainwater harvesting is another way of saving freshwater. With this method water from rain can be stored and used for various purposes.
Ground Water Depletion crisis is going to surface…

Ground Water Depletion in India: The crisis which is going to surface everywhere

Continue Reading

Exercise & Fitness

Get some sleep for your sleepless nights!

Published

on


Spread the love
Read Time: 3 minutes

Nowadays, sleepless nights are very common among people of any age group. However, in medical terms insomnia, the inability to sleep or excessive wakening in the night impairs the functioning of the immune system in the long term. And the good thing is insomnia generally treatable, no matter what your age. The key to good sleep often lies in lifestyle that a person adopts during the day as well as while going to bed.

Here are a few tips that help in overcoming insomnia.

  1. Make a schedule of your sleeping time and adhere to it. Try your best to keep your bedtime and wake up time consistent on all days including on weekends.
  2. Stay active and do your regular activities to promote a good night’s sleep. Practicing some exercise a few hours before bedtime is helpful for getting a nice sleep.
  3. In case you are on medication, check with your doctor if the medicines contribute to your insomnia. You can also check the labels of OTC products, if they contain caffeine or other stimulants, such as pseudoephedrine.
  4. Limit or avoid naps during the day time. It is often seen that naps make it tough to fall asleep at night.
  5. Say no to caffeine and alcohol and even the nicotine. All of these prevent you from sleeping.
  6. Don’t put up with pain. If a painful condition troubles you, visit your doctor and discuss options for pain relievers that are effective enough to control pain while sleeping.
  7. Stay away from large meals and beverages before bed. A light snack is good to avoid heartburn and drinking less liquid before bedtime will prevent you from waking up frequently to urinate.
  8. Always keep your bedroom cozy for sleep, i.e. Keep it dark and quiet and at a comfortable temperature.  Always use your bedroom for sex or sleep. It is better if you can hide all clocks and even wristwatches and mobile phone, so you don’t have to worry about what time it is.
  9. Keep your worries away once you get into bed. Be calm and relax. A warm bath or maybe a massage using aromatic oils before bedtime helps in better sleep. You can also do common bedtime rituals, such as taking a hot bath, soft music, reading, breathing exercises, yoga or prayer.
  10. Do not get into the bed if it is too early to sleep. You can read in another room until you feel sleepy, then go to the bedroom to sleep.
  11. Sleep as much as you need and rest your mind. Then get out of bed and avoid staying in bed if you’re not sleeping.
Yoga before bedtime cures INSOMNIA…

5 YOGA POSES THAT IMPROVES YOUR SLEEP

 

(more…)

Continue Reading

Flora

Approach to Save Earth from Deforestation

Published

on


Spread the love
Read Time: 3 minutes

Forests are being destroyed at an alarming rate. Trees are being sacrificed for making a profit, as the industrialists are pushing through forests in order to gain land for commercial purposes.

As per the surveys conducted by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, 33 million acres of forestland are lost annually around the globe. The major factors responsible for deforestation include wood and paper products, mining and oil exploitation, urbanization, acid rain, and wildfires. Besides these, supplying wood timber for wood and paper products and clearing land for crops, cattle and housing purposes are some of the other reasons for deforestation.

Deforestation causes serious impact on air and water pollution, soil erosion, climate change, loss of biodiversity. In this scenario, as an individual and being a part of the global community, one can at least plant a tree to combat deforestation. Apart from this, we can also take another step forward to alter our shopping, eating, or even driving habits. This small step can lead to giant leaps towards a global battle against deforestation.

Here are some exceptional ways that you can help in stopping or preventing deforestation.
  1. Start planting trees around you and promote tree plantation in your neighborhood.
  2. Go paperless and avoid printing. Whether at work or at home, most people still have the habit of using paper or hardcopy files. Cultivate a habit of using electronic files and folders properly.
  3. While shopping, shift your preference towards buying recycled products. At home, try to recycle or repurpose waste things as much as possible. By doing this, you will help in knocking down the demand for clearing land.
  4. Cut down your meat intake and try to eat vegetarian meals instead. This is healthy as well as a best practice as it remains problematic and time-taking to source meat products that are completely devoid of being harvested on land that once was covered with trees. Avoid buying meat products sourced from land where forests have been cleared.
  5. Stop using firewood to heat up fireplaces. It takes merely a few hours to burn the firewood but it takes several years to grow a tree. Try to change your approach to living your life in such a way that your daily activities cause the least impact on the environment.
  6. Bring awareness among people to live in a way that doesn’t impact the environment. Try to form a community and let other people know about the alarming rate of deforestation and the control measures to minimize our carbon footprint on the environment.
  7. Support and encourage companies that manufacture products by causing minimal or no damage to the environment.

 

Know amazing facts about the world’s second-largest rainforest.

Amazing Congo Rainforest

Continue Reading

Resources

Ground Water Depletion in India: The crisis which is going to surface everywhere

Published

on


Spread the love
Read Time: 8 minutes

Global warming has been a concern for the dwellers on the earth. Its repercussions are many folded in variegated forms in recent times, especially the depletion of the groundwater level. As India is the second-most populous nation across the globe it shoulders the maximum burnt to his capacity. We as a citizen of India must prepare for the worst and hope for the best to overcome such inconceivable extreme situation.

Groundwater is the water that seeps through rocks and soil and is stored below the ground. The rocks in which groundwater is stored are called aquifers. Aquifers are typically made up of gravel, sand, sandstone or limestone. India accounts for almost one-fourth of the total groundwater extracted globally, more than that of China and the US combined thus using the largest amount of groundwater 24 per cent of the global total, according to sources. Over the past fifty years, the use of groundwater for irrigation has dramatically increased in developing countries like India and China.

Increased groundwater irrigation has enabled higher and more consistent crop yields, which in turn has improved food security and reduced poverty. However, this increase in groundwater use has led to falling water levels and widespread concern about the long-term sustainability of irrigated agriculture.

These concerns are especially dire in India, where groundwater use has increased by 500% over the past fifty years. With 230 billion metre cube of groundwater drawn out each year for irrigating agriculture lands in India, many parts of the country are experiencing rapid depletion of groundwater. The total estimated groundwater depletion in India is in the range of 122–199 billion metre cube. The Indo-Gangetic Plain, north-western, central and western parts of India account for most intensive groundwater-based irrigation. And among these regions, western India and the Indo-Gangetic Plain have more than 90% of the area irrigated using groundwater.

Image result for falling water levels in Indi

India is an agrarian economy where 58.4% of people depend upon agriculture. The most popular cereals that have been cultivated are rice and wheat. These water-guzzling crops are heavily dependent upon irrigation which why the situation has been becoming alarming down the line. The report said that one kg of wheat and rice required an average 1,654 and2,800 litres of water respectively. So, just for rice, a family of four consumes approximately 84,600 litres of virtual water in a month. According to the report by Water Aid India, In 2014-15, India exported 37.2 lakh tonnes of basmati.

Image result for water-guzzling crops IN iNDIA

To export this rice, the country used around 10 trillion litres of water, meaning India virtually exported 10 trillion litres of water .it is calling for production of these goods to be made more sustainable and for consumers to be more thoughtful in their purchasing habits.

Lack of access to clean water further pushes the marginalised and vulnerable communities towards an inhuman circle of poverty. The burden of accessing water to meet daily needs prevents them from reaching their full potential by inhibiting their education, health and livelihood opportunities.

Related image

There is a dire need to invest in making clean water within the household accessible to everyone, everywhere. India’s success in providing its citizens with access to clean water will significantly impact the success of global goals that the government has committed to.

India’s over-exploitation of groundwater is contributing to—as stated by NITI Aayog—“the worst water crisis in its history”. Groundwater is one of the most important water sources in India accounting for 63% of all irrigation water and over 80% of the rural and urban domestic water supplies. In fact, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Water Development Report states that India is the largest extractor of groundwater in the world. Fifty-four percent of India’s groundwater wells have declined over the past seven years, and 21 major cities are expected to run out of groundwater by 2020.

Related image

Thus, India faces a dual challenge: to regulate the growing demand for groundwater while replenishing its sources.

Research indicates that although MSP has led to assured incomes, it has also led to groundwater depletion, income inequality and unsustainable agriculture. On the supply side, the performance of state governments has not been satisfactory, with the NITI Aayog Composite Water Management Index (CWMI) report stating that the majority of states have scored less than 50% in the source augmentation of groundwater resource index.

Given this scenario, we require policies that promote the judicious use of groundwater. Although there are a number of potential interventions in the area of groundwater conservation, there are hardly any rigorous evaluations. In absence of rigorous research, such as randomized evaluations, which can establish the causal impact of an intervention, it is a challenge to identify solutions that are highly effective.

Image result for groundwater governance in india

However, researchers could draw lessons from existing solutions, and use them to design interventions that could later be rigorously evaluated.

One of the proposed ways to reduce groundwater extraction is by reducing electricity subsidies. Subsidies on electricity are thought to play another major role in the Indian groundwater crisis. The vast majority of groundwater pumps are unmetered, and if charged, are billed at a flat, non-volumetric, and highly subsidized tariff. This flat rate is responsible, at least in part, for inefficient usage and excessive withdrawal of groundwater. In addition, the government encourages farmers to produce water-intensive crops like rice and sugarcane through increased minimum support prices (MSP).

An analysis of panel data across 370 districts in India found that a reduction in electricity subsidy was correlated with a decrease in groundwater extraction. On average, a 10% reduction in electricity subsidy generated a 6.7% decrease in groundwater extraction. However, reducing electricity subsidies for farmers could be politically unpopular. One possible way to overcome this challenge is by limiting the electricity subsidy offered to farmers and compensating them with a direct cash transfer for every unit they save. This provides farmers with an incentive to use groundwater judiciously without any additional cost to the government.

Creating sustainable change would require a bottom-up approach by empowering the local community to become active participants in managing groundwater. In line with this, the central government in its 12th five-year plan proposed a policy of participatory groundwater management (PGM), which involves a collaborative approach among government departments, researchers, NGOs and community members. The plan involves training community workers to carry out aquifer mapping and implement innovative ways to use groundwater conservatively with the local community.

Image result for participatory groundwater management

The PGM has been implemented in different states, albeit with some variations, such as the Andhra Pradesh Farmer Managed Groundwater Systems (APFAMGS) programme in Andhra Pradesh and Pani Panchayats in Maharashtra.

Advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources, World Water Day is celebrated every year on March 22. It was established in the year 1993 to build public awareness and involvement in protecting water resources around the world.

Image result for sustainable management of freshwater resources

Today, billions of people are still living without safe water – their households, schools, workplaces, farms and factories struggling to survive and thrive. Marginalized groups – women, children, refugees, indigenous peoples, disabled people and many others – are often overlooked, and sometimes face discrimination, as they try to access and manage the safe water they need.’ Safe water’ is shorthand for a ‘safely managed drinking water service’: water that is accessible on the premises, available when needed, and free from contamination.

The theme for World Water Day 2019 is ‘Leaving no one behind’. This is an adaptation of the central promise of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: as sustainable development progresses, everyone must benefit.

India is currently ranked 120 among 122 countries in the water quality index. In 2015, the Indian government committed to the UN Sustainable Development Goal 6, which promises that by 2030 everyone will have access to clean water, decent sanitation and good hygiene. The human right to water must take priority ahead of other competing demands.

However, there is almost no research study evaluating its impact. While this void is disconcerting, it also presents an opportunity for researchers and policymakers to design and test different interventions ranging from awareness campaigns to training programmes that effectively mobilize and equip the local community to work towards groundwater conservation.

Groundwater has helped India overcome food shortage in the 1960s by playing an instrumental role in ushering in the green revolution. However, the NITI Aayog CWMI report is a timely reminder of the need for policymakers and researchers to come together and conduct rigorous evaluations in order to understand what works and what doesn’t work for groundwater conservation.

No single action whether community-based, legislation, traditional water harvesting systems or reliance on market forces will in itself alleviate the crisis in India. The effective answer to the freshwater crisis is to integrate conservation and development activities – from water extraction to water management – at the local level; making communities aware and involving them fully is, therefore, critical for success.

All this will ultimately pave the way for combining conservation of the environment with the basic needs of people. Unless we take urgent measures to avert this crisis, we may find ourselves faced with an environmental catastrophe of our own making.

Continue Reading

More From NewsViewsNetwork

Subscribe To Our NewsletterDon't worry, we too hate spam.

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from around the world in your area of interest.