IIT Guwahati

The Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati (IIT-Guwahati), Australia India Water Centre, and Western Sydney University virtually launched the first edition of the India Young Water on Monday.

Manpreet Vohra, the Indian high commissioner to Australia, and Barry O’ Farrell, the Australian high commissioner to India, and Debashree Mukherjee, additional secretary to the Ministry of Jal Shakti were present at the event.

Vohra said that water is a key priority area of collaboration between India and Australia and both countries are working actively on this front.

He said that the Young Water Professional Program is a significant milestone in the India-Australia relationship and will go a long way in institutional strengthening and capacity building.

Addressing the ceremony, T.G. Sitharam, the director of IIT Guwahati said, “This launch of the Young Water Professionals (YWP) program will be a great milestone for AIWC, IIT Guwahati, and Western Sydney University.”

“India is not running out of water, in fact, water is running out of India’.  However, the shortage in India is of storage, not of water. Even though Independent India since 1947 has built more than 5800 large dams, the storage is abysmally small.

“We need to look at newer opportunities through campaigns like ‘catch the rain, where it falls and when it falls’ launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi Ji under National Water Mission,” he added.

Significance of the launch

–The launch of the India Young Water Professional Programme marks a significant milestone in the Australia-India collaboration in the field of water conservation.

–This program will be implemented by the Australia India Water Centre (a consortium of Australian and Indian universities).

–This initiative aims to provide a structured platform for capacity building with strategic and long-term investment to support the water management reforms in India.

Objectives of the programme

–The objectives of the India Young Water Professional Programme are to equip water professionals with the necessary skills, knowledge, behaviours, and networks that will better enable them to contribute to the development and management of water resources in India, and to address the competency needs and priorities of the water sector in India.

How is the programme unique?

–This program is unique and different from typical capacity building and training programs. It is focused on the Engaged Training and Learning Model.

–About 70% of the program is focused on project-based learning through Situation Understanding and Improvement Projects (SUIP).

–The Program focuses on gender equality and diversity because sustainable water management can only benefit from the views and skills of all members of society.

–A total of 20 participants have been selected for the first edition of this programme (10 men and 10 women) from central and state implementing agencies of the National Hydrology Project.

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