Jagral Tank

Jagral Tank




Ishaan Chowdhary

Executive Summary

The given case is about the encroachment of ‘Sarkada Talav’, a tank in village Jargal in Thasra Taluka of district Kheda in Gujarat in the month of August, 1989. The encroachment (by way of growing paddy in the tank bed) had been done by a farmer (a Sheikh) of nearby village Vanghroli. He claimed that he had mortgaged his land and that this crop would see him through that year. He was also ready to pay the rent to the panchayat if allowed to harvest this crop.
Nishar Saiyed, the new ‘Talati’ of Jagral and Vanghroli village had experienced that in many circumstances, the tanks would finally be captured by private farmers in the end. Panchayats, being weak were seldom able to realize the rent earlier agreed upon.
Seventy percent of the land in Jargal and Vanghroli was irrigated. The villages had heterogeneous populations with Patels and Maleks having bulk of the irrigated land. The presence of a lift-irrigation co-operative in the area shows the enterprising nature of people.
The central problem in this case is faced by the protagonist, Nishar Saiyed as to how to proceed to save a Common Property Resource (CPR), the tank bed from encroachment and going into the hands of private farmers that too without the support from the village sarpanch.
The best solution proposed by the group is that the encroachment of the tank should be removed. However, the removal should be carried with due support from the community.
Logic behind the solution is that despite the presence of other irrigation resources, the tank continues to be important as it recharges wells and is vital source of water harvesting in the village. Mahi is not a perennial river and therefore in the summer, the tank might still be an important source of water for irrigation and for other purposes. Moreover, encroachment of one common property resource might expose the ineffectiveness of...

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