|A rapid review of the national watershed development project for rainfed areas in India (1997)|
It is proposed that the FARM programme assist the NWDPRA in the four designated FARM sites through the testing of the following approaches:
1. Identification and integration of promising indigenous technologies
2. Development and testing of methodologies for the establishment and operation of effective farmers' organisations
3. Development and testing of methodologies for participatory monitoring and evaluation of program activities
4. Establishment and utilisation of communal property resources through effective land use titles
Working Groups could be established to evaluate these activities with a view to their incorporation into the NWDPRA program, At national level, and based on the observations and suggestions made earlier, the following national working groups of experts are recommended to strengthen the NWDPRA program:
1. Working group of national experts on methodology of farmers' organization building based on their traditional cultural mores and institutions to ensure people's participation in the NWDPRA program and to ensure the program's ownership by the farmers of the small watersheds.
2. Working group of national experts on incentives to rainfed farmers for watershed management (WM) activities
3. Working group of national experts on bottom up technology development and on integration of indigenous and improved technological options for rainfed area watershed development
4. Working group of national experts on in-service training needs, curricula updating of the existing WM related institutions, and on the feasibility of an Indian Institute of Watershed Management (IIWM) for the formal training of future generations of WM professionals at various levels
5. Working group of experts on common property resources (panchyat lands, village pasture lands, waste lands, nearby forest lands) to find ways and means of handing over its use to the people following the existing declared policy of the Government of India
6. Establishment of an Indian WATMANET (Watershed Management Network, as a counterpart to ASIAN WATMANET) to bring all the watershed management related organizations and institutions, including NGOs and upcoming farmer's organizations, under one umbrella. This will act as a forum for the exchange of experiences and ideas within India. Ideally, the above recommended working groups should also be under this umbrella. Also, all the research or other studies needed on watershed management can be led by this network. At present many national organizations dealing with watershed management do not have a framework for exchange of experiences within India. This network could also be considered as a precursor of the Indian Institute of Watershed Management (IIWM).
It is suggested that most of the members of the working groups could be drawn from institutions outside the NWDPRA program so that they can act as an unbiased body.