73% of the rural population of Madhya Pradesh depend on agriculture. The incidence of poverty in the State has declined but is still above the national average of 26%. About half the land, 15 million hectares (Mha), is cultivated but less than 40% is irrigated and a further 2.4 Mha lies fallow.
There are 11 agroclimatic zones in the State, all with different resources and topography. Some have sufficient groundwater, but in others it has already been over exploited; some are hilly while others are flat. Therefore a variety of AWM options are needed, which are tailored to the local conditions.