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National Water Awards


Recently, Uttar Pradesh bagged the first prize for efforts towards water conservation in the National Water Awards (NWA) 2020 organised by the Ministry of Jal Shakti.

About National Water Awards:

Water is one of the vital components of life. The rapid pace of irrigation growth, urbanization & industrialization has put enormous stress on water resources. Cumulative impact of increase in use of this precious natural resource has led to water scarcity in many regions of the country. Nevertheless, the climate change has also resulted in change in hydrologic cycle in the country. Hence, it is necessary that this scarce resource is protected by effective and efficient management on sound scientific methodology for its sustainable development.

The Ground Water Augmentation Awards and National Water Award were launched in the year 2007 with an objective to encourage all stakeholder including the Non – Governmental Organizations (NGOs), Gram Panchayats, Urban Local Bodies, Water User Associations, Institutions, Corporate Sector, Individuals etc. for adopting innovative practices of ground water augmentation by rainwater harvesting and artificial recharge, promoting water use efficiency, recycling & re-use of water and creating awareness through people’s participation in the targeted areas resulting into the sustainability of ground water resources development, adequate capacity building amongst the stakeholders etc.

Considering the fact that surface water & Ground water are integral part of the water cycle, it is felt necessary to institute unified National Water Awards with the objectives of encouraging the stakeholders to adopt holistic approach towards water resources management in the country.

About the Award:

  • The National Water Award was launched by the Jal Shakti Ministry in 2018 to recognise and motivate individuals and organizations doing exemplary work in the field of water resources management.
  • Overall 57 awards have been announced in 11 categories. These include: Best State, Best District, Best Village Panchayat, Best Urban Local Body, Best Media (Print & Electronic), Best School, Best Institution/RWA/Religious organization for Campus usage, Best Industry, Best NGO, Best Water User Association, and Best Industry for CSR Activity.

3rd National Water Awards 2020 list is given below:

“Best State”Uttar Pradesh
“Best District” – North ZoneMuzaffarnagar, Uttar Pradesh
“Best District”– South ZoneThiruvanathapuram, Kerala
“Best District”– East ZoneEast Champaran, Bihar and Godda, Jharkhand
“Best District”– West ZoneIndore, Madhya Pradesh
“Best District”– North-East ZoneGoalpara, Assam
“Best Village Panchayat”– North ZoneDhaspad, Almora, Uttarakhand
“Best Village Panchayat”– South ZoneYelerampura Panchayat, Tumakuru District, Karnataka
“Best Village Panchayat”– East ZoneTelari Panchayat, Gaya District, Bihar
“Best Village Panchayat”– West ZoneTakhatgadh, Sabarkantha, Gujarat
“Best Village Panchayat”– North-East ZoneSialsir, Sirchip, Mizoram
“Best Urban Local Body”Vapi Urban Local Body, Gujarat
“Best Media (Print & Electronic)”Mission Paani (Network 18)
“Best School”Govt. Girls Hr. Secondary School, Kaveripattinam, Tamil Nadu
“Best Industry”Welspun India Textile Ltd., Gujarat
“Best Water User Association”Panchgachiya MDTW WUA, Hooghly, West Beng
“Best Industry for CSR activities”ITC Limited, Kolkata, West Bengal


  • To motivate individuals/organisations who are doing commendable work in the field of water resources conservation and management.
  • To create awareness among the people about the importance of water and encourage them to adopt the best water usage practises.

Opportunities Provided:

  • Start-ups, leading organisations and people can engage, deliberate and strengthen existing partnerships on issues concerning water conservation and management activities.

Need for Water Conservation and Management:

  • Depletion of water resources due to overuse and decline in water supplies due to climate change is pushing India closer to the tipping point of water scarcity.
  • Apart from these, several government policies especially pertaining to agriculture resulted in over-exploitation of water. These factors make India a water-stressed economy. In this context there is a need for water resource conservation and management.
  • India’s current water requirement is estimated to be around 1,100 billion cubic metre per year, which is projected to go up to 1,447 billion cubic metre by 2050.
  • India constitutes 16 % of the world’s population, but the country has only 4% of the world’s freshwater resources. With the changing weather patterns and recurring droughts, India is water stressed.
  • According to the Central Ground Water Board (CGWB), with 230 billion metre cube of groundwater drawn out each year for irrigating agricultural 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.

Way Forward

  • People tend to neglect the importance of water conservation because in most places it is free of cost or charged nominally, so it is important for them to realise its importance and be aware of its degrading status.
  • Initiatives like National Water Awards, along with the other government initiatives will help to create that awareness and motivate them to adopt the best water usage practises which will help India in becoming ‘Jal Samridh Bharat’.

Related Initiatives

Source: PIB

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