Multi-Stakeholders' Dialogue as an Approach Towards Sustainable Use of Groundwater: Some Experiences in the Palar River Basin, South India

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Date
2004
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Abstract
"Due to rapid urbanization and brisk industrialization, there has been growing competing demand for groundwater among various users and sectors. A disturbing feature of this 'developmental process' has been intense pollution and conflicts. In this paper it is argued that groundwater which is regarded as a common pool resource has been subject to over extraction and pollution due to unlimited and unregulated access enjoyed by individuals. This has implications for rural indebtedness, unemployment, poverty, social inequity and conflict in rural India. All available institutional mechanisms have failed to restore order in such stressed river basins. In such a critical situation, multi-stakeholders dialogue (MSD) is seemingly a logical solution to find ways forward. Thus, the MSD process was initiated in the Palar river basin (one of the heavily stressed river basins in southern India) in the year 2002 and the results of this initiative have been quite encouraging. The dialogue process is ongoing but its success very much depends upon the support that it gets from the government."
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IASC, common pool resources, groundwater, water quality, pollution, irrigation, environmental policy, conflict resolution--case studies, environmental law
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