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Groundwater Irrigation in India: Gains, Costs and Risks


  • Vasant P Gandhi


  • N.V. Namboodiri


Groundwater has rapidly emerged to occupy a dominant place in India’s agriculture and food security in the recent years. It has become the main source of growth in irrigated area over the past 3 decades, and it now accounts for over 60 percent of the irrigated area in the country. It is estimated that now over 70 percent of India’s food grain production comes from irrigated agriculture, in which groundwater plays a major role. Since the development of groundwater irrigation has not largely been government or policy driven - has happened gradually through highly decentralized private activity, this revolution has gone largely unnoticed.[IIMA W.P. No. 2009-03-08]

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  • Vasant P Gandhi & N.V. Namboodiri, 2009. "Groundwater Irrigation in India: Gains, Costs and Risks," Working Papers id:2091, eSocialSciences.
  • Handle: RePEc:ess:wpaper:id:2091 Note: Institutional Papers

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. John Briscoe & R.P.S. Malik, 2006. "India's Water Economy : Bracing for a Turbulent Future," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 7238.
    2. Bhatia, B,, 1992. "Lush Fields and Parched Throats: The political economy of Growndwater in Gujarat," Research Paper 100, World Institute for Development Economics Research.
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    Cited by:

    1. Zaveri, Esha & Wrenn, Douglas H. & Fisher-Vanden, Karen, 2016. "Water in the Balance: The Impact of Water Infrastructure on Agricultural Adaptation to Rainfall Shocks in India," 2016 Annual Meeting, July 31-August 2, 2016, Boston, Massachusetts 236216, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    2. Srivastava, S.K. & Chand, Ramesh & Raju, S.S. & Jain, Rajni & I., Kingsly & Sachdeva, Jatinder & Singh, Jaspal & Kaur, Amrit Pal, 2015. "Unsustainable Groundwater Use in Punjab Agriculture: Insights from Cost of Cultivation Survey," Indian Journal of Agricultural Economics, Indian Society of Agricultural Economics, vol. 70(3).

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    Groundwater; India; agriculture; food security; production; policy; Irrigation; Surface Water; equity; efficiency; externality; problems; laws and policies;

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