Meghalaya Became the 1st Indian State to Draft a Water Policy

Meghalaya became the first Indian state to draft a water policy to ensure water conservation, issues, and protection of water resources in the State. The Meghalaya State Cabinet approved the draft on July 12, 2019. The approved policy intended to achieve sustainable development by Meghalaya state government.

The Water Policy, which was approved by the Meghalaya State government, aims to provide safe and hygienic water for various purposes like drinking, domestic, sanitation and livelihood development. The policy recognized water as a common pool resource for all residents of the state.

It is hoped that the Water conservation will improve health and livelihood and reduce water vulnerability among the people. Implementing the policy will assure good governance for present and future generations through integrated water resources management and environmental sustainability.

Key Features of Policy

1. Meghalaya State Dam Safety Organisation’s (SDSO) safety audit of state dams at periodic intervals to identify the safety risks and mitigate the adverse impacts.
2. The policy included measures such as the construction of check dams to conserve rainwater, setting up of rainwater harvesting systems, and proper ways to control improper use of groundwater.
3. State government committees will be formed at village level to address the issue of groundwater. With this, the participation of the community is expected as it is to reach to the villages.
4. The State Department will monitor the quality of the water to check if it has a high content of iron or if it’s acidic.

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