Irrigation in India, The Persian-wheel in Punjab

A tank is an artificial reservoir for catching and keeping the rain water. Most of the tanks, some very large, are to be found in Southern India, many of them constructed by the ancient India kings.

In a country like England, which has a heavy rainfall, the problem of the farmer is to get the excess of water off his land. The important question there is drainage. In a dry country like India, which depends upon the monsoon (an uncertain factor), the problem is to get the water on to land, and keep it. The important question here is irrigation. For a failure of the monsoon means drought, the interruption of agriculture for early a year, and famine. 

Image by Walt Stoneburner via Flickr

Irrigation in India is carried on by means of tanks, wells and canals.

A tank is an artificial reservoir for catching and keeping the rain water. Most of the tanks, some very large, are to be found in Southern India, many of them constructed by the ancient India kings. They are useful; but their chief fault is that they generally run dry just when they are most wanted –that is, during a drought.

Image via Wikipedia

Wells are found all over, and are of great use, especially where the sub-soil water is near the surface, as it is Punjab. Different parts of India use different methods of raising the water from the wells, as the Persian-wheel in Punjab, the inclined plane in the Utter Pradesh, etc.  

But the most important means of irrigation is by canals. The most wonderful system of canal irrigation in the world is that of Punjab. Punjab is wanted by five main rivers (hence its name); but formerly most of the water of these rivers flowed away to the sea, leaving large tracts of fertile lad UN watered and so uncultivated. The precious river water is now caught and distribution by a vast ad intricate system of canals all over the state; so that thousands of acres of land, formerly desert, now produce crops of enormous value, and independently of rainfall. It is a great engineering feat, and an incalculable blessing to the poor farmers, and to the whole India.      

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2 Responses to “Irrigation in India, The Persian-wheel in Punjab”
  1. felixfoxmm Says...

    On December 8, 2011 at 11:36 am

    The region of Punjab is unique in that it merges with the neigbouring regions of shiks, mulsims and Hindus alike . Rice culitvation is a very quenesstial livelyhood and farming in this regions is so vital that water is very pricelessly sought after to water the its yields . This in tunrs determines not only the nation’s abilty to feed its people but the entire furture of India as an argain producing region . Any changes and distrubances in its fragile ecology would invite doomsday argurers to forecast all hell and catastophy as evidences of some sort of divine wrathful vengence on earth such as the recent outbreak of floods in Pakistan . If all hell on earth is the vengue and despairing fate predestined by some vengeful diety will of Allah according to shite afghan radicals and the bordering contentious sate of Islamabad , what is then is its hope that the god of all grace and mercy of the universail supreme guru of its popoulus shiks would bestow by contrast ?

    Surely, the sate of Punjab especailly that of armistar as evident by the Bollywood’s birde and prejudice only tells how true that this region of mid north east Indian is somehat a bedrock caught up in a joust between moderates and fundamentalist and its constant divisions form all walks of life of religion, ecology, economics and politics alike while the US influnences creeps to undermine and challange her indegious with its exogeous agenda.

    The Perasin wheel of Punjab perhaps proves the point that pancea to the wake and future of mother india is not in its radicalised religion nor its hot embedded political system since the time of Indra Ghandi . Surely its remedy or the paneca must lie in is a more down to earth radical soltuion of post modern enginerring ingenuity and drrawing from its past historical lessons that has seen shiks, mulims and hindus living in co- ecology prosperity . While hindu fundamentlaism thrives on exploting the unequal rifes of the caste system , buddhism advocates karmic cosmic consequences , Isalm on shared equally of its brotherhood and the tolernt tanents of Sufism , The shik religion though a reletive post modern minor faith proves the merits of its elective grurship by grace and thrive on a predestined sovereign god who loves and thrives on its own karmic consequences . And what would the this muit-facted religious facet of its community values contribute is the key question to be resloved here and the now .

    The lesson to be learnt from its heriatge is just this – the fact that Shah Jahan\’s Taj Mahal – a wonder of great Peasian Architecture and enginerring ingenuinty was built not by ingenopus muslim radical fundamentlsits or any shrewd politican but by ordianry masons and quarry wrokers both shik and Muslims alike bearing the huge burdens of transpoartion and construction of back-breaking labour to the luxuraint and lofty masions of imperail self-iduldent mulsim Argra .
    So if this fact of its past could be carried into the way of its future, surely the Persain wheel could be re-constructed like-wise .

    Felix Th lim- post modern occidental sikh faith, philsophy and folklore and gatka and religious reformation

  2. articlesfactory Says...

    On October 3, 2012 at 10:53 am

    thank you for your great infoarmation

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