Water conservation is undoubtedly one of the most pressing environmental issues for governments worldwide. Water resources are being exploited due to excessive industrialization, irrigation, and urbanization. This has created immense pressure in above-surface and below-surface water sources, and its impact is visible in the form of dire water scarcity across the country. In addition, climate change has also impacted the rain cycle, which is one of the most reliable sources of water in many parts.
To create awareness about the water crisis and the necessity of efforts to conserve water, Jal Shakti Ministry launched the National Water Award(NWA) in 2018. National Water Award recognizes the efforts of organizations, individuals, and stakeholders towards water resources management in the country. The awards also aim at encouraging more and more innovations to integrate efforts of conserving water.
The 3rd National Water Awards are being re-launched by the Department of Water Resources, with a more focused approach towards mass awareness creation and motivation. The awards will continue to felicitate efforts of people and organizations working towards the objective from across the length and breadth of the country.
India has the world's 16 % population. But the country's freshwater resources are only 4% of the world's resources. Drastic climate change and rapid urbanization have created an unprecedented water crisis in the county. India has become a water-stressed economy due to the acute shortage of water, erratic weather patterns and recurring droughts.
Objectives of National Water Award
- National Water Awards aim to motivate organizations and individuals for their extraordinary contribution toward water conservation and water resources management and work toward the Government's vision to create a Jal Samridh Bharat.
- Through these awards, the ministry is looking to recognize innovative practices in rainwater harvesting water recycling, increasing the efficiency of water usage, and promoting awareness among the public.
- The awards allow start-ups, organizations, and individuals to directly interact with policymakers and look for ways to adapt the best practices for water resources management in India
- Awards also provide an opportunity for stakeholders to come together and create reliable partnerships that can strengthen the resolve to adopt better practices
National Water Awards Winners List
The third National Water Awards were announced in 2020 by the Union Minister of Jal Shakti, Mr Gajendra Shekhawat. Uttar Pradesh bagged the first prize along with Muzaffarnagar, Uttar Pradesh bagging the Best District Prize in the North Zone.
Rajasthan was awarded the second prize and Tamil Nadu was in the third position. Following states, districts and organizations were also awarded to create a more water-rich country for their commendable efforts.
Best District– South Zone
Best District– East Zone
East Champaran, Bihar, and Godda, Jharkhand
Best District– West Zone
Indore, Madhya Pradesh
Best District– North-East Zone
Best Village Panchayat– North Zone
Dhaspad, Almora, Uttarakhand
Best Village Panchayat– South Zone
Yelerampura Panchayat, Tumakuru District, Karnataka
Best Village Panchayat– East Zone
Telari Panchayat, Gaya District, Bihar
Best Village Panchayat– West Zone
Takhatgadh, Sabarkantha, Gujarat
Best Village Panchayat– North-East Zone
Sialsir, Sirchip, Mizoram
Best Urban Local Body
Vapi Urban Local Body, Gujarat
Best Media (Print Electronic)
Mission Paani (Network 18)
Govt. Girls Hr. Secondary School, Kaveripattinam, Tamil Nadu
Welspun India Textile Ltd., Gujarat
Best Water User Association
Panchgachiya MDTW WUA, Hooghly, West Beng
Best Industry for CSR activities
ITC Limited, Kolkata, West Bengal
FAQs on National Water Awards
Q.1) What are National Water Awards?
National Water Awards (NWA) are given by the Jal Shakti Ministry to organizations and individuals for their extraordinary contribution to best practices towards water resource management.
Q.2) When did National Water Awards start?
Although the National Water Awards and Ground Water Augmentation Awards were first started in the year 2007, it was in 2018 that National Water Awards were re-started with a unified objective of water resource conservation and management.
Q.3) Who won the first prize in National Water Award in 2018 and 2019?
Tamil Nadu won the first prize in 2019 in the normal category, while Mizoram won the first prize under a particular category in the same year. In its first year, the state of Maharashtra won the first National Water Ward in 2018.