Kangjam Sonamani Singh
ICAR Research Complex for NEH Region Manipur, Manipur
Jal Kund-a sustainable resource conservation technology in the hills In the present scenario of acute climate change, mankind is dealing with one of the biggest environmental threats which are having adverse effects on the natural resources and could seriously hamper food production and security, sustained water supply, biodiversity of forests and other natural ecosystems, human health and settlements. Chandel is one of the districts in Manipur state of India, which has greatly bore the brunt of climate change. The challenge is especially greater wherever people’s livelihoods are vulnerable and particularly dependent on natural resources. In these sensitive areas, adoption of resource conservation technologies is of prime importance for the protection of farmers’ livelihoods and for ensuring sustainable tribal development. The district is characterized by intense precipitation with more than 1500 mm total rainfall during the 2017 and erratic distribution pattern with 3 and 2 numbers of long dry spells of 33 days and above during 2016 and 2017 respectively. In the present of erratic rainfall, lack of assured irrigation for crops is the main reason why fields in the district non-remunerative. The need and importance of rain water harvesting is more critical in areas along the hill slopes due to high seepage/infiltration loss nature of the soil. Harvesting of rain water has become one of the most prime practices and pre-requisite for practicing any form of successful and sustainable agriculture and allied sectors under such unreliable rainfall pattern. During rabi season when there is hardly any rainfall, water harvested in poly-lined ponds (Jal Kund) serve as a lifeline for the seasonal vegetable crops. Farmers now earn an additional income through double cropping with the help of life-saving irrigation provided from these Jal Kunds.