The first World Water Conference began in Udaipur on Thursday, 8 December. The conference, being organised for the first time in India, is being held under under a collaboration between Janardan Rai Nagar Rajasthan Vidhyapeeth (Deemed University) and World Water Commission of Sweden at the IT Auditorium situated at Pratap Nagar, Udaipur.
Magsaysay Award winner Dr. Rajendra Singh, President of the World Commission for Drought and Floods, also known as the Waterman of India, presided the opening session of the conference, in the presence of a gathering of global experts from across all continents. In his inaugural address, Dr. Singh affirmed that the diminishing water supply and sources pose a threat to international peace. He suggested using a decentralized approach for water conservation, in order to mitigate this risk. Dr. Singh stressed on the importance of integrating civic and government committees for water conservation and promotion, calling it a must for the environment of a globalized world. In order to advance the international efforts to find a solution to get rid of the huge problem, he said that special commissioners have been appointed in each agro-ecological micro-climatic zone of the planet. Vice Chancellor of Janardan Rai Nagar Rajasthan Vidhyapeeth, Prof. Shiv Singh Sarangdevot, has been appointed the Agro Ecological Micro Climatic Zone Commissioner from India.
According to the Chief Guest Lakshyaraj Singh Mewar, the world is witnessing a struggle in saving potable water. Buying clean waters is a still a problem many parts of the country and areas across all continents are dealing with. He added that if drinking water conservation lessons are taught in schools as a mandatory requirement, then kids would be inspired to practice water conservation at home and also they will spread this message in their respective residential areas. Dr. Ashutosh Tiwari, Director of the Institute of Advanced Materials, IAAM (Sweden), while declaring water as an important element, linked it to the vital need of the human body.
“Today the world is looking towards India for water conservation” - Prof. Shiv Singh Sarangdevot
According to Prof. Sarangdevot, social, technological, and scientific initiatives can be used to save water. He diverted attention to the issue of rapid groundwater depletion in cities and increasing exploitation of rural water resources, as well as the necessity to make up for it. He added that, India, which accounts for 17% of the global population, has access to only 4% of global water resources.
On Friday, 9 December the discussions will focus across 16 themes in four technical sectors. Dr. Indira Khurana and Ashutosh Tiwari launched the website of World Water Commission, Sweden. By including the objective of self-sustaining growth in education, Prof. Balwant Rai underlined the significance of water conservation in the social integration of future generations.
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