Why should irrigation is necessary for India?

Irrigation in India:

India using most of our water resources for irrigation purposes in agriculture, almost 75%. In fact, irrigation is most essential to increase agricultural production. The new technology requires the use of a definite quantities of water for growing crops with the high-yielding varieties of seeds and growing crops on particular soil types. Whether we use fertilizers or not, insecticides and pesticides or not, unless we use sufficient amount of water, crop yield will not increase.

It is also possible to grow a secondary crop after the rainy season, with the land being sufficiently moist due to irrigation, and in the dry season, we can grow additional crop with the help of irrigation water. Apart from the need to grow secondary crops, irregular and undependable monsoons are another reason why we need artificial irrigation facilities. The distribution of monsoon all over the country is also uneven, and we need irrigation in the relatively dry areas.

Moreover, there are certain soils in the country like sandy and loamy soils that do not retain water, and for them regular irrigation is extremely necessary. These soils do not retain rainwater at all, unlike alluvial soil and black soil. Similarly in the hilly areas, where irrigation is done on the hillsides, irrigation is very essential as these slopes do not let water to be retained.

An undisputed fact is that India is a populous country with a large dependence on agriculture. To feed this growing population and the ever increasing demand for food, agricultural production and productivity has to be increased. Intensive farming, rotation of crops, all this requires extensive irrigation, for production of all food and non-food crops to be increased.

Modes of Irrigation:

  • Flow Irrigation and Lift Irrigation.
  • Minor/Medium/Major Irrigation.

There are two possibilities:

The water source may be at a place which is above the level of the user or at a place which is below the level of the user. In the former case, it is easy to irrigate the fields because the water will flow down from the reservoir. This is the case of flow irrigation. On the other hand, a pump set will be required to pump the water up from an underground reservoir, which may be run by diesel or electric. This is known as lift irrigation.

Where the crops require very little water sprinkle irrigation is also used. Some classifications are also based on the type of storage facility used or the path by which the water is carried to the fields for irrigation, consequently we have tank irrigation, well irrigation and canal irrigation which account for 12%, 40%, and 40% of the total irrigated area in India, the rest  8% irrigation being done by other sources.

Tags: Ba Economics

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