India then and now – Watering India


INTRODUCTION Ex – Malguzari Tanks are concentrated in Bhandara, Chandrapur and Nagpur district. On account of these tanks Chandrapur and Bhandara districts are called ‘Rice Bowls’ of the state. There are thousands of such tanks in these districts and their irrigation potential in 1954 with actual irrigation in 1974 is as under, Serial no. District Total no. Tanks 1. 2. 3. Total Bhandara Chandrapur Nagpur 3,861 3,466 175 7,502 Irrigation in 1954
(in lakhs of Acres.)

Actual irrigation
(In lakhs of Acres.)

2.47 1.27 0.13 3.87

2.27 1.16 0.42 3.85

HISTORY  Most of these tanks are constructed about 250 to 300 years ago.  It is not exactly known as to how these tanks were constructed, but it appears that in many cases, certain forest areas were allotted to the people for Habitation and cultivation, through the agency of an enterprising person named as ‘Patil’ who arranged to colonise village with families from various places.  The Patil used to get commission on the assessment, and he used to pool together the labourers of the village for Nistar works.  Thus these tanks or bunds were constructed as a protection against the shortage of drinking water in the hot climate.  It was experienced that the rice crop would fail frequently due to the timely rains so these tanks came into existence for supplementing water required for rice fields.  With the growing need of cultivating rice crop these tanks were constructed practically everywhere, without the consideration of technical or economical aspect.

Farmers irrigate their fields by lifting water. RIGHTS FOR FREE USE OF WATER  Some of the tanks belong entirely to the Malguzari and as such only their fields used to be irrigated.  While some tanks used to irrigate fields of other cultivators also. Through these wells. Rock toe is also provided to the percolation tank to resist the weight of the casing and hearting material. Percolation tank is one kind of indirect irrigation system. Stored water percolates through body of the dam and adjoining wells from the command area get recharged. If any time in the monsoon. .  This is the reason why the renovations of the tanks are being found financially infeasible.  Fish cultivation.  Shingada cultivation which will cater the need of five to six families in a year. Most of the tanks are situated in a very flat basin and hence the length of the bund is abnormally more.  These tanks were formerly repaired generally by the beneficiaries whose efforts were co-ordinated by Malguzars. Earthen bund (with casing material means Muroom and hearting material means black cotton soil) is constructed across the local nala to store water in the tank. Construction of the Percolation tank is one of the oldest irrigation systems which are still in use. Fish cultivation is also done as an additional benefit to the cultivators. district Nagpur. BENEFITS:  Safe and assured irrigation from substantial tanks. extra water above full reservoir level flows through the waste weir and it gradually flows to the river. Parshvani percolation tank           This percolation tank is situated at taluka Parshvani. tanks get over flooded. The capacity of the percolation tank is about 5 to 7 million cubic feet.

Piers are constructed. Advantages:  The slab is constructed over the abutments and the piers and this slab can be used as a roadway by the people. 31st may every year. The gates are fixed in the Kolhapur type weir after monsoon i. actually adopted in the Kolhapur district of Maharashtra. The structure is constructed across the local river or nala.T. After construction of this K. no water is been stored and total irrigation is hampered.5 mts.T. . they are handed over to Gram Panchayat for fixing and taking out the needles (gates).KOLHAPUR TYPE WEIR (K.e.WEIR): This is one of the oldest irrigation practise.  Due to flood water. after 14th October every year and these gates are taken out before the monsoon is started i.  Grown crops or seeds or manures are transferred from one side to other through these types of weirs. they don’t remove the gates before monsoon. where a stream of water flows throughout the year. Disadvantages:  Once the gates are fixed by the gram panchayat. This structure contains two abutments at the ends of the bank of the river and in between these two abutments at the span of 2-2 mts.  This type of weir is constructed to connect two villages situated on two different banks of the river or nala.Weirs.e. this structure is over flooded and gets damaged and then after no one cares to repair these structures. These piers are constructed with channels where 2 mts. due to heavy rains. because no funds are available with the Gram Panchayat and hence for the next year. X 0. size gates are fixed to store water. The water stored against these gates is utilised by the farmers for irrigation.

Total command area of this project is 1. KHINDSI HEAD REGULATOR GATES:  Actually Khindsi project is the oldest Ex – Malguzari tank.  In the year 1979 to 1980. 75. In the monsoon. And this command area lies in Maharashtra only. Two canals (Pench right bank canal and Pench left bank canal) are emerging from Pench project.TOTALLADOH HYDROELECTRIC PROJECT: This is an inter . The water released from Pench left bank canal is utilised fully for irrigation from Nagpur and Bhandara district. In the peak hours.  As such.Cs AND R. in the monsoon when dam is over flooded.B. 1/3rd of total electricity generated at Totalladoh hydroelectric project is distributed to Maharashtra state and 2/3rd of total electricity generated is distributed to Madhya Pradesh. The main spillway portion of Totalladoh dam is having fourteen radial gates of size 12X8 mts.000 hectare.B. The alignment of this project is situated exactly on the boundary of Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra. the excess flood water is released through these gates. . The total catchment area submergence of this project lies in Madhya Pradesh. to meet out additional demand of water supply KHINDSI HEAD REGULATOR GATES structure was constructed.state project constructed in the year 1974-75 to 1988-89. water is also released through intake wells to Hydroelectric project through pen stock and it directly goes to two vertical turbines units where total 160 megawatt electricity is generated. As per inter – state agreement.  It was constructed about 300 years ago without head regulator structure.  Through this HEAD REGULATOR. means earthen dam and ogee shaped spillway is in concrete. The water released from Pench project to right bank canal is utilised for drinking purposes for Nagpur city. 400 cubic feet/sec of water is released through this canal to the Pench Branch ZERO. water from Pench project and Khindsi project is combined and used for irrigation. This is a composite dam. This released water directly goes to Pench project which is situated 30 kms away from this Totalladoh hydroelectric project.Cs were completed for irrigation purpose. when Pench project and its L.

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