Poverty reduction approach in South Asia: Rejuvenating centuries old water bodies to improve rural livelihoods, A case of Karnataka state, India uri icon


  • South Asian countries are endowed with large numbers of village tanks, which serve as huge reservoirs.The inherent network of natural water streams and canals in the command areas connect these tanksto supply water to agricultural fields. People in the rural areas use these tanks to harvest and storemonsoon rainwater for multiple uses which include agriculture, livestock, fishing, domestic use andrecharge of domestic drinking wells. Most of these tanks were built between the 3rd century B.C.E.and the 12th century C.E. Later, improved designs were used to construct these tanks. Over the lastfew decades, several Indian states have made enormous efforts to rejuvenate these tanks by involvinglocal user groups. This paper, reviews the traditional water bodies in South Asia, describes tanks andtheir dimensions in the Indian context and analyzes the community based approach adopted in theState of Karnataka in South India. It reviews the status, main components of design, execution, keyachievements, impacts, benefits and critical lessons learnt

publication date

  • 2015