RAIN WATER HARVESTING
As you know 2/3 of the world’s land area are filled with water. In India especially Kerala is blessed with water in ancient times. But now the picture is changed.
Nearly a billion people in the world do not have access to clean drinking water. And if the govt, arid the community do not care, the number of those who would be badly in need of potable water could swell to a mind boggling 2.5 million in just 25 years. And more shockingly the majority of these people would be in India. So warned the former Prime Minister Vajpayee while opening a two day seminar on rain water harvesting in New Delhi on May 22, 2000.
Calling for people’s participation in tackling water scarcity, the prime minister said that the center and the state alone cannot be expected to tackle the problem. He emphasized the need for anion wide people’s movement would include nongovernmental organizations Panchayat Raj institutions, business and citizens to manage country’s water resources that would include rain water harvesting as one measure that stands out for its “simplicity, efficacy and affordability”.
Prime Minister’s voice must find an echo in the chords of every conscientious citizen. In water resources too we see strange paradoxes. While millions struggle to get a pitcher of potable water, there is another India when people tend to waste and contaminate it just became it is easily available. These two India’s cannot co-exist.
India receives about 4000 billion cubic meter of rain fall every year of which 1869 bcm flows off an average annual run of in the various rivers of the country due to geographical limitations, only about 890 bcm of surface water can be utilized in addition to 423 bcm of replenishment ground water, the govt, already promoting fled rain water through water shed management programme, two artificial recharge of ground water and roof top rain water on harvesting.
The Union Water Resource Ministry has written to all state govt to immediately take measures to undertake rain water harvesting in all possible locations. Rainwater harvesting has assumed overriding significance all the more in view of the plummeting round water levels during the recent drought. The govt has already taken steps, as an experiment to start the scheme in various private buildings including Rashtrapati Bhavan in Delhi. It has asked the schools to have the rain water harvesting. This would also help inculcate awareness among students about staring and economical use of water.
Tamil Nadu has already made rain water harvesting compulsory for all new buildings in the urban areas. From different parts of India there are several success stories of rain water harvesting and these should inspire state govt NGOs etc to undertake similar rain water harvesting scheme that would benefit all. In the years ahead, water is going, to be a luxury and every citizen should feel it is his and her duty to conserve every drop of water and conservation is simple, practical affordable and feasible through rain water harvesting.