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Immense investment and CSR related opportunities for industry to improve India’s water security: Secretary, Department of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, Jal Shakti Ministry

Dec 15, 2023

NEW DELHI, 15 December 2023: Ms Debashree Mukherjee, Secretary, Department of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, Ministry of Jal Shakti, Govt of India today, addressing virtually highlighted the potential in India’s water management sector. She said that there are huge investment opportunities for the private sector in various areas of water management including water storage, climate change, improving the river and water bodies, dam safety and rehabilitation. “Along with the investment, there are a lot of CSR related opportunities in the sector that will improve the water security for the nation,” she added.

Addressing the ‘9th India Industry Water Conclave’ and ‘11th edition of FICCI Water Awards’Ms Mukherjee also applauded the efforts taken up by FICCI along with other industries in improving the water management in the country.

Mr G Asok Kumar, Director General, National Mission for Clean Ganga, Department of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, Ministry of Jal Shakti, Govt of India while emphasizing on the opportunities for the private sector in the water sector said that recently the government of India signed and launched the ‘Global River Cities Alliance’, during the COP 28 meeting in Dubai. With the participation of a total of 11 countries, we are providing a platform for all business opportunities to showcase their technologies. There are a total of 300 cities of the world who are part of this program, and we are looking at increasing this number to 500 cities, he added.

Speaking on the use of treated water in agriculture, Mr Kumar added that we are now looking at using the treated water for irrigation purposes and it will reduce the extraction of fresh water from the rivers. “To ensure that freshwater flows in the river only, we are trying to reduce the extraction of water for irrigation purposes by substituting fresh water with treated water. It has tremendous opportunities also for the industry as well,” he emphasized.

Ms D Thara, Additional Secretary (A & CV), Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Govt of India said that if there is one thing which can put India back on the path of progress, it is our water situation and there is a need to improve the overall water security in the country. She further added that start-ups are playing a key role in the development of water management. Our aim should be to govern 10,000 MLD (million liter per day) of reused water by 2030. “Wastewater is not waste; it should be regarded as used water and can be used again for other purposes. This important resource which has to be reclaimed and we all should work together to solve this with the use of new technologies and artificial intelligence,” she noted.

Ms Naina Lal Kidwai, Chair, FICCI Water Mission and Past President, FICCI stated that reclaiming water can certainly increase water supplies for different uses. “Recycling and reuse of wastewater are essential to circular economy approach to address the supply and demand of water management. The industry has a key role to play to act as a keeper of resources,” she added.

Mr Shraman Jha, Co-Chair, FICCI Water Mission and CEO, Hindustan Unilever Foundation said that all stakeholders need to understand that water can no more be anything that can be taken for granted. Climate change and water are the two sides of a coin. It manifests itself as well as a cause and effect, he added.

Mr Shailesh K Pathak, Secretary General, FICCI said, “Startups and AI-driven technology can make things easier, whether it is agriculture or industries, with regards to water usage. FICCI will work very closely with its industry members to ensure that we make a significant impact both on investments and CSR front in this area.”

11th Edition of FICCI Water Awards were announced during the session.

List of Awardees:



1St Prize

2nd Prize

Special Jury’s Award

Industrial Water Use Efficiency

Grasim Cellulosic Division

(Unit of Grasim Industries Ltd.)

Vilayat, Bharuch, Gujarat

Joint 2nd Prize



Muzaffarpur Thermal Power Station, Kanti




Century Enka Ltd. (Pune)


Innovation in Water Technology

ECOSTP Technologies Pvt. Ltd.


Simhadri Super Thermal Power Station

Naturesani Pvt. Ltd.

Community Initiatives by Industry

Nayara Energy Ltd.



Best Startup for Water Innovation

Seventy One Percent Analytics Pvt. Ltd.

Joint 2nd Prize:


Waterlab Solutions Pvt. Ltd.




Tellus Habitat Pvt. Ltd.


Water Initiatives by NGO

Srijan India



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