The Osmana district of Maharashtra, which is situated between Latur and Solapur districts on east and west and Karnataka in the south, was just a few days back was among states worst drought-affected districts.
The Osmana district of Maharashtra, which is situated between Latur and Solapur districts on east and west and Karnataka in the south, was just a few days back was among states worst drought-affected districts. Speaking to ‘The Indian Express’, District Collector Prashant Narnawre said, “the deployment of water tankers to tide over water scarcity used to begin from October, and the numbers would increase with each passing month until July.oday, there is not a single water tanker in my district.”
The solution of the problem lies in pond-digging. A farmer in Padsali village in Mohol taluka of neighbouring Solapur district, Jayram Namdeo Shirsat, found out last year, when he decided to beat the drought by digging a farm pond on 1-acre land. Today, the Rs 7-lakh project — part-government finance, part-bank loan — can hold up to 1 crore litres of water, giving a fresh lease of life to Shirshat, who cultivates grapes on 5 acres.
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This trend of community farm ponds is increasingly gaining ground in drought-prone districts across the state. And they are supported by the government’s Jalyukta Shivar Yojna — or, water conservation scheme. During the first phase, nearly 6,200 “most critical” villages — most of them in Marathwada and Vidarbha — were selected. In Upala village of Solapur, farmer Ganpatrao Zhendge said, “The trend was to get borewells until 2014. Now there is more stress on water-conservation works, including farm ponds.”