It is evident, however, that in a country having only a seasonal rainfall, an immense quantity of rain-water must necessarily run off the ground. The collection and utilization of this water is, therefore, of vital importance. Much of it flows down into the streams and rivers and ultimately finds its way to the sea. Incredibly large quantities of the precious fluid are thus lost to the country. The harnessing of our rivers, the waters of which now mostly run to waste, is a great national problem which must be considered and dealt with on national lines. Vast areas of land which at present are mere scrub jungle could be turned into fertile and prosperous country by courageous and well-planned action.

     Closely connected with the conservation of water supplies is the problem of afforestation. The systematic planting of suitable trees in every possible or even in impossible areas, and the development of what one can call civilized forests, as distinguished from wild and untamed jungle, is one of the most urgent needs of India. Such plantation would directly and indirectly prove a source of untold wealth to the country. They would check soil erosion and conserve the rainfall of the country from flowing away to waste, and would provide the necessary supplies of cheap fuel, and thus render unnecessary the wasteful conversion of farmyard manure into a form of fuel.
It is clear that India being an agricultural country, depends on seasonal rainfall. When a considerable quantity of water comes down as rainfall in a particular season, some part of it must be able to run off the ground. At the same time, we need to collect and effectively use the excess water in future. Hence this conservation of water is of great importance. A lot of the rainwater flows into the rivers and streams and finally reaches the ocean. Large amounts of silt-laden water (with all nutrients) are thus mixed in the sea, making a huge loss for the mankind. We have to take control of the abundant water and use it to produce sustainable energy - it is a matter of national importance. If we can handle this issue with a well-planned and bold course of action, enormous areas of land which are wasted as shrubs and bushes can be converted into fertile farming lands.
rain + farms.jpg
Our agriculture depends on the seasonal rainfall!
Another aspect closely connected with the conservation of water resources is afforestation. Planting trees according to the vegetation, climate and soil in every possible bit of land is essential. Converting all the wild forests into fertile lands that reap benefits is the need of the hour in our country. Such an action would lead to a good amount of creation of wealth for the country.
  • Having more trees also helps in preventing soil erosion.
  • Conserve rainwater by avoiding wastage.
  • Reduce the conversion of farm manure into fuel, as it provides for more fuel at cheaper rates.
Meanings of difficult words:
harnessingcontrol and make use of (natural resources), especially to produce energy
scrubvegetation consisting mainly of branches and twigs fallen from trees and shrubs
untoldtoo much to be measured 
State Council of Educational Research and Training (2019). Term-2 English Standard-9. Water - The Elixir of Life - Sir C.V. Raman (pp. 121-145). Published by the Tamil Nadu Textbook and Educational Services Corporation.