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Integrated water resource management being promoted in Barind

RAJSHAHI, May 6, 2017 (BSS)- An initiative has been taken to promote integrated water resource management in Barind area in order to reduce its existing water- stressed condition.

Swiss Red Cross and DASCOH Foundation have jointly started implementation works of 'Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM)' Project for sustainable management of existing water resources in Barind area.

The project is being implemented in drought and arsenic affected 35 Unions and four Pourasavas under Rajshahi and Chapainawabgonj districts since 2015 with financial support of SDC. Under the project, Water Resource Planning Organization (WARPO) has been working for formulating water related policies and time-fitting rules and regulations as state part.

Assistant Project Coordinator Jahangir Alam Khan here told BSS that main thrust of the regional level IWRM Project is to build a sustainable and effective institution through farmers' level piloting of different sustainable water resource management models through participation of local people.

To this end, project strategies are: to create awareness and organizing of local citizens relating to water related problems and prospects; to involve local government institutions and boosting their capacity in water resource management and to build an effective coordination platform through proper application and practicing of water laws related rules and regulations.

Utmost emphasis is being given on proper water management like reduce or water use and reduces its pollution, reuse or recycle of used water, recycle or recharge of underground water and restore or restoration of declining water layer and water reservoir from pollution.

Talanda Union Parishad Chairman Abul Kashem told BSS that participation of local government institutions and grassroots peoples is the precondition to make any good work sustainable. For this reason, the project is being implemented with joint participation of local beneficiaries and local government institutions.

In this field, the beneficiaries have to bear a portion of project cost so that their ownership mentality is emerged and afterwards no problems relating to operation and maintenance are arisen. Projects are selected locally.

Water resource problems identification, prospect analysis and planning are settled through village-based water resource management committee. Union Water

Resource Management Samity prepares an integrated plan through assembling the entire water resource committee projects within the union.

With the proposal they make bargaining with Union Parishad so that they can implement highest number of schemes.

After inclusion of water management project in annual planning and budget they contact with different government organizations, Upazila Parishad and non-government organizations like DASCOH.

In this way, local people select project and seek assistance of the government offices concerned for their technical support in implementation stage.

Similarly, the project works for building strong relation between people, local government institutions and government agencies concerned on the basis of local needs.

Kakonhat Pourasava Mayor Abdul Mazid said the water-deprived poor and underprivileged communities in the water-crisis Barind area are getting safe drinking water privileges in the present model.

As a whole, the project has created positive impact among the local communities as a result of concerted initiative and participation in addition to judicious uses of existing resources, he mentioned.