Raipur. Chhattisgarh has added another feather to its hat; Central government has selected Bilaspur and Surajpur for National Water Award, 2019. The National Water Award for the year 2019 will be given to both the districts for the conservation and promotion of water sources by the Ministry of Water Power. Bilaspur district will receive the first prize under Revival of River category and Surajpur for Water Conservation category. The state shall receive the award in November.
It is worth noting that Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel's vision for the rural economy of the state is starting to bear fruit. Under the NGGB (Narv a, Gharwa, Ghurwa, Bari) scheme, a significant component of the ambitious 'Suraji Gaon Yojana' of Chhattisgarh government, a large number of rivers and drains are being conserved and developed in all districts of the state. With this, availability of drinking water, development of irrigation resources, recharge of groundwater has given a new life to the rural economy.
Under the NGGB Scheme, forty-seven structures were constructed in various rivers and drain in Bilaspur district; this produced a water-logging capacity of 17.508 million cubic meters. Forty-nine small reservoirs are under construction, which will create 48.53 million cubic meters of waterlogging capacity. Because of this, water will be available in 181 km long rivers and drains. The total length of the thirteen main rivers and drains and local drains flowing in Bilaspur district is 2352.56 km. The Water Resources Department has constructed one large, one medium and 165 small reservoirs and 117 anicut. The Water Resources Department has revived a total of 1146.90 km of river drains.
Similarly, the 'Dabri Mahabhiyan' program aims to conserve water in Surajpur district and raise the level of groundwater. As part of this program, construction of structures like Gabion, Loose Boulder Check Dam, Brushwood has led to the revival of well-known small drains and wells. This program led to the irrigation of about eighteen-thousand acres of land, and farmers have started harvesting crops twice a year.