8. Irrigation organization and management.
In: Stability and Changes in Rural Institutions in North Pakistan; Ed.
W. Manig; Alano Edition Herodet, F.R.G., 1991, pp. 141-153
The present study is an effort to investigate the nature of water distribution and its management in the six selected villages in Peshawar
Water is one of the basic components of modern agricultural input used in Pakistan. Therefore, the development of irrigation and improvement of irrigation systems both at the micro and macro level are crucial for Pakistan's agricultural development. The availability of additional water helps in extending the area under cultivation and enhances the cropping pattern from low to high value crops. Improved management can probably do more towards increasing agricultural production both of food and other crops in the irrigated areas of the world than any other agricultural practice. In an agrarian economy, irrigation may be a good source of employment. It raises both the employment and income of the land and adds to capital formation.
For the investigation a questionnaire was prepared. The survey of all of these villages was carried out in order to have some basic information.
Purposive sampling methods were used for the selection of 110 farmers.
On the other hand, discussions were held with the officials from the irrigation department and their ideas were included to substantiate the study.
The irrigation system in Pakistan has undergone a remarkable change in present times. The old, customary field practices have been replaced by modern technology to ensure proper management of water. Efficient water management should be an essential feature of the irrigation planning.
Integrated development of water resources, an efficient method of conveyance and distribution of water on the farm, a judicious method of water application, and a cropping pattern for high water-use efficiency, a specific time for irrigation, and removal of excess water are important aspects of a comprehensive irrigation development programme.
Efficient water management largely depends upon selecting the methods best suited to local conditions because irrigation management systems differ from region to region in a country.
Concluding, water is one of the primary inputs for crop production.
Proper timing and a judicious amount of use of this input along with scientific methods of application are important for achieving a good yield when properly combined with other inputs. One aspect of the poor performance of irrigation schemes has been defective methods of water distribution between the farmers at the head and the tail ends of the water courses and inefficient management of the irrigation department.
The current system has a history and tradition. The water rights were built up over the years. They cannot be easily changed, even by providing the equity element. No change in the system of water distribution has been reported by any farmer in the project area. The system of warbandi (water by turn) has prevailed for a very long time.
It was very clear that the farmers were in favour of water-users'organizations, but they have not been motivated for this purpose. It will require government incentives, assistance, and education and extension services in order to initiate such organizations. Additionally, the land-tenure system will also play an important role in such organizations.
The government of Pakistan is aware of the need for organizing the farmers at the "grass roots" level. The major problem at present is that the farmers have not been given the necessary information on a large scale, or incentives to improve their own farm irrigation systems. The time has come for a national emphasis or programme to involve the farmers in the improvement of their system and the optimal utilization of irrigation water. But it is important for the farmers to be allowed to work out their own organizational procedures which fit their particular situation. No attempt should be made to pressurize them to adopt a particular scheme that is foreign to their understanding. Thus, improvement and development must be carried out by and for the farmers themselves.
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Africa, Niger, Sudano-Sahelian Zone, soil water balance, state of the art, soils, soil water monitoring, ICRISAT
SIVIKUMAR, M.V.K. et al.
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