Management of Chambal Ravines for Income Enhancement

  • G. P. Verma
  • Y. P. Singh
  • Anil Kumar Singh
  • S. K. Verma


Deep to very deep ravines in Chambal valley represent the worst form of land degradation by runoff water. Initial splash erosion caused by raindrop goes unnoticed, but subsequent formation of rills and gullies was too conspicuous to be missed, and this was the stage of erosion to be tackled through well-established and tested technology evolved by research for rainwater management on watershed basis. But policymakers and planners thought soil and water conservation to be one-time operation involving mostly mechanical structures. Accordingly, budget and targets (hectarage) were fixed. Soil conservationists constructed field bunds and property bunds in the name of contour/graded bunds and leveled the ravine land without measures to hold the loose soil in situ; tanks were constructed at sites having no catchments, and structures of inappropriate type and designs were constructed at improper sites. Consequently, the land degradation went from bad to worst. A network of gullies changed into network of deep and very deep gullies still marching ahead unabated as deep and large ravines, despite of spending millions of rupees again on leveling, bunding, and aerial spray of seeds for afforestation. The fact is that foolproof technology for reclamation and control of very deep ravines is just not available nor can it be evolved by conducting research on well-managed research station farms. To be purposeful, the research must be conducted right on the land under very deep ravines. Thanks to efforts made by RVS. Krishi Vishwa Vidyalaya for getting some funds from Indian Council of Agriculture Research, New Delhi, for conducting research under NICRA Project at Aisah village district Morena, whose almost all land is under deep ravines and has therefore been shifted to a new site. Very good beginning was made during the last 2 years of operation of project to demonstrate how the inaccessible land with deserted look can be changed into greenery of economic plants yielding vegetables, fruits, food grains, fiber, fuel, and raw material for valuable medicines. However, the technology to make the soil stay in situ rather than in transit for conservation farming on deep ravines is still to be perfected. The performance of various types of land shaping tried to control the advance of deep gullies and reclaim these could not be confirmed within the limited period of 3–4 years. Hence, there is a need to conduct further research on (1) to confirm various observations already made, (2) to implement a strong program of hydrometeorological monitoring to have locality-specific information for precise designing of various structures, (3) to test anicut system for gully control and ravine reclamation in the upper most area where general land slope and the slope of main gully bed are >3%, and (4) to work out the manurial requirement of various crops to be grown on soil after land shaping.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. P. Verma
    • 1
  • Y. P. Singh
    • 2
  • Anil Kumar Singh
    • 3
  • S. K. Verma
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Soil ScienceJawaharlal Nehru, Krishi Vishva VidayalayaJabalpurIndia
  2. 2.AICRP-IWM, R. V. S. Krishi Vishwa Vidyalaya-ZARSMorenaIndia
  3. 3.RVS Krishi Vishwa Vidyalaya, R. V. S.GwaliorIndia
  4. 4.Department of Soil Science & Agricultural ChemistryRVSKVV, Vishwa VidyalayaGwaliorIndia

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