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Jaldoot Application to Record Water Levels in Villages Across India

Image credit: MoRD_GoI; Twitter

The Ministry of Rural Development has developed the Jaldoot application to record the water levels of selected wells in villages across the country. The Minister of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj, Giriraj Singh, launched the app at a function in New Delhi.

According to a press release, the Jaldoot app will enable village employment assistants (Gram Rojgar Sahayak-GRS) to measure the water levels of selected wells twice a year (pre-monsoon and post-monsoon). In every village, an adequate number of measurement locations (2-3) will be selected to represent the groundwater level in that area.

The app will facilitate the collection of village data, which can be exploited for research and better planning in the future. The groundwater data can also be used as part of the Gram Panchayat Development Plan (GPDP) and for Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (NREGA) planning exercises.

Singh said that the government has taken several steps to improve water management both in the rural and urban areas, through watershed development, afforestation, water body development and renovation, and rainwater harvesting. However, the withdrawal of groundwater and use of surface water sources has reached a critical stage in many parts of the country, resulting in the significant depletion of water levels. In fact, as per an assessment of Dynamic Ground Water Resources (2017) carried out by the Central Ground Water Board (CGWB), out of the total 6,881 assessment units in the country, 1,186 units in 17 states and union territories were categorised as ‘over-exploited’ where ‘annual groundwater extraction’ is more than ‘annual extractable groundwater resource’. It is therefore necessary to measure and observe water level tables across the country.

In August, the government announced it would provide financial support to the tune of IN₹ 3.29 crores (US$ 411,882) to a start-up incubated at the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur (IIT-Kanpur) to develop smart water management technologies, including the Dhaara Smart Flow Metre.

As reported on OpenGov Asia, the flow metre is an integrated system for online monitoring. It uses two beam ultrasonic flow metres that are designed to track water distribution in real-time for applications like drinking water supply, groundwater extraction, industrial water usage, and precision irrigation.

The device collects data through sensors, stores it in the device, and transmits it to the online cloud servers. Then, the data transmitted to servers is analysed and displayed on a dashboard. The solution uses a combination of hardware and software for flow measurement and water management respectively.

The system is battery-operated and does not require external power. The hardware architecture is based on the Internet of things (IoT) communication circuits, which are patented in India. Additionally, it complies with ISO and Central Ground Water Authority standards. The water usage data is automatically recorded in an online logbook through telemetry via 4G/2G. The built-in telemetry and battery-operated capabilities make it easy for users to monitor their water consumption virtually anywhere (even when the power is out). Initially, the device will be marketed for commercial uses in hotels, hospitals, malls, IT parks, schools, and industrial users (food products, packaged drinking water, pharmaceuticals, and paper and pulp).

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