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With large parts of Maharashtra reeling under the drought, our focus this month is on watershed development. While thousands of villagers in many places are thirsting for water, there is the contrasting picture of a number of villages which have drought-proofed themselves through sound watershed management programmes. Although Anna Hazare's Ralegan Siddhi and Popatrao Pawar's Hiware Bazar (See Change for Better, March, 2013) are the most well-known examples, we bring to you the inspiring stories of the Watershed Organisation Trust (WOTR), Ahmednagar and the Shirpur model developed by a retired geologist, Suresh Khanapurkar.

With so much of expertise available and so many live examples of successful watershed development, there is absolutely no reason why the majority of our villages suffer a crippling blow whenever drought strikes. Highly motivated individuals like Hazare, Popatrao or Khanapurkar and NGOs like WOTR can only do so much.

The big push has to come from the political leadership which can help galvanize people and resources towards achieving our objectives in the mobilization, augmentation and management of a resource as precious as water. Will we act now? Or let the crisis worsen further till things get so desperate that matters can't be postponed any further?
Do check our other features and write to us with your feedback, thoughts and suggestions.

Best wishes!

Abhay Vaidya,

About Us: Change for Better is a journal promoting constructive thought and action. It is published by Maharashtra Knowledge Corporation Limited (MKCL). Now in its 12th year, MKCL is the largest provider of basic computer education in India with a chain of over 5,000 franchises.


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