Introduction: Irrigation refers to the process of supply of water through artificial means such as pipes, ditches, sprinklers, etc.
The irrigation system helps the farmers to have less dependency on rain-water for the purpose of agriculture. The necessity and importance of irrigation is highlighted below in points:
1. Variety of Climate: Indian climate and weather conditions experiences a varied range of climate. There is extreme heat at some places, while the climate remains extremely cold at other places. While there is excessive rainfall at some places, other places experience extreme dryness. So, irrigation is needed in India.
2. Irregular and uncertain monsoon: India is a land of monsoon. But monsoon is irregular and erratic in nature. Sometimes it comes easily and brings heavy rainfall, but sometimes it come late and brings inadequate rainfall. Further, there is irregularity in the distribution of rainfall throughout the year. The irrigation system helps the farmers to have less dependency on rain-water. During the months of inadequate rainfall, the crops are supplied water through irrigation systems.
3. Agriculture based economy: Indian economy is based on agriculture. A large portion of Indian population depends on agriculture. Without irrigation agriculture is not possible in dry areas or during the months of inadequate rainfall. Naturally, for the agricultural activities across diverse regions, there is a need for proper irrigation system.
4. Winter crop: India is a vast country with fertile plain lands suitable for Rabi as well Kharif crops. But there is no rainfall during winter months in several places. Without irrigation production of Rabi crops along with other crops is not possible. Rabi crops are grown during the long dry spell of winter season. This is possible mainly due to advanced irrigation facilities.
5. High breed seeds: At present because of high-breed seeds, crops can be produced at any seasons. But the production of crops is totally depending on water. The introduction of advanced irrigation system have enabled the farmers to produce crops even on during dry season.
6. Soil Character: In many places, the soils have less water-retaining capacities.
7. Jute and Paddy: Irrigation is needed for growing some thirsty plants like jute and paddy.
Conclusion: Hence, irrigation is of utmost importance for a agriculture based country like India. To feed a population of over one billion people, there is a need for production of crops round the year. But for this purpose, irrigation water is needed. So for the production of food crops and cash crops, irrigation is a must.