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Abstract

DURING THE LAST three decades there has been a substantial increase in well irrigation in many parts of India. This has resulted in a sharp increase in groundwater draft, leading to a decline of water levels in many areas, particularly in the low-rainfall hard-rock (LR HR) areas, such as, the eastern dry zone (EDZ) in the southeastern parts of Kamataka State. Water level decline has depressed well yields and increased well failures, particularly in respect ofborewells (BWs). This has also led to a steep increase in the cost of well construction, seriously affecting the viability o· wells. As a result, many small and marginal farmers are denied access to well irrigation. The above situation has prompted a group of 16 marginal farmers, owning a contiguous piece of 13 hectares (ha) ofland in Sullikere Village ofBangalore District (Urban), to form a cooperative society (CS). The state government has given a grant to the CS for 3 BWs, 3 submersible pumpsets (SPs) and for installing a sprinkler system. The above farmers have been practicing community BW and sprinkler irrigation for the last two years, cultivating a judicious mix of perennial and field crops and deriving a steady flow of income.

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