Konkan re­gion to be wa­ter-rich again

RA­JASTHAN MODEL In­dia’s water­man launches com­mu­nity-based ini­tia­tive to help pre­serve rain wa­ter

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - NAVI MUMBAI - G Mo­hi­ud­din Jeddy ht­for­nav­i­mum­bai@hin­dus­tan­times.com

PAN­VEL: Wa­ter con­ser­va­tion­ist Ra­jen­dra Singh, known as the water­man of In­dia, on Fri­day launched Jal Parikrama for Konkan re­gion in Pan­vel, to help con­serve wa­ter in the belt.

Singh has for the past 31 years trans­formed sev­eral arid ar­eas in Ra­jasthan into wa­ter­rich ar­eas through com­mu­ni­ty­based wa­ter re­source man­age­ment and con­struc­tion of rain wa­ter stor­age tanks, check dams and other tech­niques.

Singh has taken up the com­mu­nity-based ini­tia­tive in the Konkan re­gion.

He has pro­posed a Konkan Jal Parikrama scheme to en­rich the Konkan area with wa­ter through ef­fort and par­tic­i­pa­tion of peo­ple at var­i­ous lev­els.

Ex­perts said the scheme could prove to be a boon for Konkan re­gion.

Singh said, “We want to make Konkan re­gion self-suf­fi­cient in wa­ter with the help of the peo­ple here. The ob­jec­tive is to pro­vide enough wa­ter in the re­gion and rid it of wa­ter scarcity that it reg­u­larly faces.”

He said that they have al­ready planned to work on four rivers — Jag­budi, Ar­juna, Kand­hari and Janavli — where peo­ple have agreed to take up the pro­ject.

Singh said, “Konkan re­gion gets al­most 3,000 mm of rain­fall ev­ery year, most of which ends up in the sea through the rivers while the peo­ple are left with lit­tle. This is hap­pen­ing due to lack of ad­e­quate plan­ning. Our scheme will ad­dress the is­sue to en­sure proper use of such wa­ter.”

Say­ing that Konkan at one time had the most wa­ter in the coun­try, he added that it was los­ing wa­ter which is af­fect­ing agri­cul­ture.

“Peo­ple have been leav­ing Konkan and go­ing to cities. Konkan tourism, en­vi­ron­ment and na­ture with which peo­ple had a re­la­tion­ship are break­ing. If we save ev­ery drop of rain wa­ter, the sit­u­a­tion can change and the area will thrive again and be self-suf­fi­cient,” he said.

Singh said they had taken up sim­i­lar drives in Ra­jasthan 31 years ago and suc­ceeded. “We are sure peo­ple in Konkan too will sup­port the drive. The Konkan peo­ple should re­alise that they need to come back to vil­lages for health and peace and not lose them­selves in the rat race in the city which is get­ting com­mer­cial by the day. In ar­eas in which we have worked in Ra­jasthan, the peo­ple are now giv­ing work to those from the cities.”

HT

Wa­ter con­ser­va­tion­ist Ra­jen­dra Singh at the func­tion at Pan­vel.

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