India: The pioneer in Irrigation Development
India is No.1 in the world in terms of net irrigated area (68.4 Mha, year 2014-15) followed by China (65.87 Mha, year 2017) and USA (26.4 Mha, year 2017).
Various multipurpose water resources projects and groundwater development played a pivotal role in the development of irrigation potential from a mere 22.6 million hectare in the pre-plan period to 126.73 million hectares (estimated) till the end of 12th Five Year Plan. This has resulted in the increase of annual food grain production from about 50 million tonnes to about 280 million tonnes.
Assured Irrigation would be key in the fight against ensuing climate change along with other various measures.