Water is the prime natural resource that supports life on this Earth. Management of water along with that of land and soil is essential for development of a State. These resources need to be conserved and efficiently used for economic growth and environmental sustainability. An integrated approach in sustainable development and management of water and land resources is, therefore, imperative to make success in State’s efforts to alleviate poverty and mitigate the hardship of the masses.

Further, in the early 80’s it was realized that benefits from major and medium irrigation projects were not commensurate with the huge investments made, mainly due to increasing gap between irrigation potential created and irrigation potential utilized. To address this problem, three major strategies were suggested for implementation:

  • Water resource development should invariably include efficient maintenance and management of the irrigation infrastructure created
  • There should be participation of the users of irrigation water in maintenance of such infrastructure
  • Effective co-ordination and harmony should be maintained among the Government departments which provide services to irrigated agriculture.

Under the above compelling circumstances, the necessity of establishing multidisciplinary Institutions at State level was felt and as per advice of the Government of India, Water and Land Management Institutes (WALMIs) were established in different states during 1980’s.