Simplified Functions And Possibility Of Fulfillment By WUA

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Simplified Functions And Possibility Of Fulfillment By WUA

The PIM act and its rules place a heavy responsibility on the executive committee members of the WUA to fulfill a number of functions which are mostly technical in nature.

Table – Simplified Functions of WUA and authors comments

Brief Function



Prepare a plan for the maintenance, extension, improvements, renovation and modernization of irrigation system

Maintenance plan can be easily prepared on some training to a metric pass person. Extension and improvements requires the help of a junior engineer. Services can be hired.


Carry out above works from the funds of WUA

It can be easily done through contractors and a good supervision.


Prepare irrigation plan and notify to the members. 

Requires good mathematical calculations and knowledge of  water needs. An intermediate science knowing intelligent person can gain the knowledge on training. Services can be hired.


Coordinate with the Irigation, agriculture, fisheries and other related departments.

Requires good knowledge of the project and cumunication skills .


Prepare and implement a warabandi schedule.

Requires good mathematical calculations and  knowledge of time allotment. An intermediate science knowing intelligent person can gain the knowledge on training. Services can be hired.


Regulate the release and use of water among the various outlets under its area of operation according to the rotational schedule of the system;

It can be easily done by patrolling the canal during the running period.


Record irrigation and promote economy in the use of water allocated

Recording of irrigation can be easily done after some training to a high school standard person. Needs the skill to guide the farmers on how to irrigate, when to irrigate and how much to irrigate? 


Prepare water demand and collect water charges

It requires some training and tough rules.


Maintain a register of land owners and other records.

Can be easily done as such registers are readily available with the revenue patwari


Prepare and maintain an inventory of the irrigation system

Requires skills and knowledge which can be acquired from some training by a matricculate person.


Monitor flow of water for irrigation

Can be easily done by recording of gauges.


Resolve the disputes, if any, between farmers

Requires skills and knowledge which can be acquired from some training.


Raise resources

Can be done by taxing the members and other resources. 


Maintain accounts

Can be easily done after some practice of writing cash books


Cause annual audit of its accounts and social audit

Can be easily done by hiring the services


Conduct regular water budgeting.

Requires skills and knowledge which can be acquired from some training.


Fair penalties / punishment for offences

Requires skills and knowledge which can be acquired from some training.


There are two aspects of capacity building as under:


After the capacity building /trainings etc., WUA will have following capacity:

I. General

II. Regarding Water Management


Only performances of above aspects (activities) will indicate that WUA have good capabilities (knowledge etc. of management in all aspects to improve agricultural production, save water, and help pro-poor component. Trained personas can also be examined periodically through some questions (in local language) like examination papers. The result of capacity building through huge money paid to consultants/ NGOs must be examined by the pay master through questions.

A better approach, a new methodology of training / capacity building is proposed as under:

Proposed methodology of capacity building

With the above discussions and that in the past chapters, it is proposed that WUA should employ a person and be trained to help the management committees and perform the above tasks. He will be full time available to WUA and will start working from day 1 along with building his own capacity, that of his members of WUA, while performing the jobs. If he fails he can be easily shunted out.  Such a person can be called as water Master of WUA or a canal tender or canal operator. He will be like an employee of a private co. and no government service rules shall be applicable and may also differ from WUA to WUA.

For some years, his salary may be subsidized by the Government, say 3 to 5 years from so many other subsidies / other provisions of irrigation and agriculture sector. This approach is cheaper than the approach so far adopted, long lasting and accountable. Within a year or so a team of water management experts will develop within the WUA. He shall work under the water management, agriculture subcommittee and management committee.

The person can be trained in IMTI/ WALMI/ Agriculture training centers or other suitable training centre such as KVK (Krashi Vikas Kendra- nearly one in each district) or Agriculture College of the state or private with or without guest faculty depending upon their capacity within the available resources. The Water Master may be given an appropriate honorarium as per the decision of the executive committee. Alternatively any executive member, well educated as per qualifications described below may be given the task of Water Master. 


Taken from the book:

Practical integrated approach