Success Stories and Case Studies

  • Urmila can neither walk upright, nor run about, nor do her chores easily. She is loved in her parents' house and they do not grudge her the extra care she requires. In rural India, this state of affairs does not last long for a girl, especially since she's only six years old. This is a wre...
    chicuposted 2 years 2 months agoread more
  • "Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase". - Martin Luther King, Jr. Centuries ago, this faith in the unknown might have inspired the elders in Sikkim to worship their springs. What it would yield was perhaps unfathomed then, but today it surely is evident. ...
    Usha Dewaniposted 2 years 3 months agoread more
  • There are about 227 lakes and wetlands in Sikkim, many of which are revered by the people as holy. While Gurudongmar and Keopchari are popular with the tourists, Tsomgo lake at an altitude of 12,400 ft above sea level, is perhaps Sikkim's most visited tourist spot. Tsomgo, located about 35 km f...
    Usha Dewaniposted 2 years 3 months agoread more
  • Bandu Singh, a lean old man aged around 60, has spent his entire life living in a small mud house in Kaalapani, a small village located in Manawar block of Dhar district, Madhya Pradesh. Kaalapani has a population of 849 people of which 99.41% (as per Census 2011) are listed as belonging to Schedule...
    chicuposted 2 years 3 months agoread more
  • By the year 2000, farmers in Mahbubnagar, Telangana could see how risky their investments on groundwater had become. The area barely received 600 mm of annual rainfall, and just 15 percent of its area was under irrigation. This caused a crisis for both drinking water and irrigation for a s...
    Amita Bhaduriposted 2 years 3 months agoread more
  • I first met Kunti and Priya at a meeting of the Springs Initiative, which is a network of organisations and individuals working across India to restore their springs. Both from Kulgad village, they had come to talk about the work they had done on their spring. The officials present at that meet...
    chicuposted 2 years 4 months agoread more
  • Chedua Bedia is a 47-year-old marginal farmer from Dubulabeda village, Angara block of Ranchi district. In addition to being a successful farmer, Chedua has founded a school and motivates other farmers from his village to attend classes! This is a special school called the Farmers Field School where...
    Amita Bhaduriposted 2 years 4 months agoread more
  • World Water Day 2015 proved to be significant to the people of Meghalaya. That day is when the state's Springshed Management Initiative was launched. The Chief Secretary, PBO Warjri said that the people of Shillong have traditionally depended on springs but in recent years, land use changes and...
    chicuposted 2 years 5 months agoread more
  • Amulya Soren couldn’t get stable yields in the kharif (monsoon) paddy in his farm. A member of the Santhal tribe, he was the beneficiary of a surplus land redistribution programme in Hirbandh block of Bankura, West Bengal. The undulating terrain in which his farm lies receives sufficient rain...
    Amita Bhaduriposted 2 years 6 months agoread more
  • Vanajakshi, a 21 year old girl from Gondipakalu in Chintapalle Mandal, Andhra Pradesh, recalls that, growing up, she was often late to school. It wasn’t because she was having trouble waking up. It was because she had to accompany her mother to fetch water, and that took up around 2.5 hours every ...
    Divya Nposted 2 years 6 months agoread more
  • Women in bright, colourful clothes carrying pots on their heads -- this is how popular media often depicts the women of rural Rajasthan. This is what I expected to see in the Bakhasar region of Barmer district, which borders the famous salt desert, the Rann of Kutch. The groundwater is often sa...
    Manu Moudgilposted 2 years 7 months agoread more
  • Santosh Gavale, a resident of Manyali village in Umarkhed tehsil of Yavatmal district, is a happy man now. The village, which has faced an increasing water crisis over the years, is now water sufficient because it manages its water resources well and shares it equitably. Santosh managed to do this f...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 2 years 7 months agoread more
  • Muneswar and more than 170 farmers in Ambikapur, Chhattisgarh have no regrets after shifting over from traditional agricultural methods of farming to the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) method. Why would they? Most of them have been overwhelmed by the kind of returns they have got compared...
    makarandpurohitposted 2 years 8 months agoread more
  • The Bhuiyas, a group of people who belong to the Scheduled Castes in Jharkhand and Bihar, have historically been landless foragers -- a fact reflected in their name which means 'of the earth'. During the Bhoodaan movement, a group of Bhuiyas received a small amount of land on the Chhota Nagpur plate...
    chicuposted 2 years 8 months agoread more
  • For many in Rapar taluka of Kutch, migration was a way of life due to the absence of rainfall; they went in search of greener pastures. But when the people realised their collective potential and how they could use it to resolve water scarcity in their villages, there was no stopping them ,and the c...
    Usha Dewaniposted 2 years 8 months agoread more
  • Hydrogeology has, before this, been considered a highly specialised field known only to dedicated academics. Today, this arcane science is being studied by villagers and development workers across India's mountain regions. The reason for this surge of interest? It is, quite simply, a matter of life ...
    chicuposted 2 years 8 months agoread more
  • Mazhapolima is an open well recharge programme based on rainwater harvesting in Kerala. Facts and figures indicate that Mazhapolima was initiated in 2009 by the Thrissur district administration in collaboration with Panchayati Raj institutions to ensure water security to households. In the firs...
    sabitakaushalposted 2 years 8 months agoread more
  • Big sandstone hills cover the landscape dotted by little grass, while the land below is covered with Israeli babool (akesia tortlis), an invasive species which does not let any other vegetation grow. Amidst this, Baadi village with its lush green fields full of cabbage, pepper and groundnut seems ou...
    Manu Moudgilposted 2 years 9 months agoread more
  • "Just having the people of Delhi look at their water meters everyday will enable the city to deal with its current water supply", said K.P Singh. He should know. Singh is a resident of Rainbow Drive, a bungalow community in Bangalore. Led by him, the society has revolutionised its water availabili...
    chicuposted 2 years 10 months agoread more
  • Chitradurga district in Karnataka receives the lowest rainfall in the state. According to the Drought Monitoring Board, most borewells are dry and where there is water, its quality is poor. According to Chitradurga-based Devaraja Reddy who is a hydrogeologist,150-200 borewells were dr...
    Divya Nposted 2 years 10 months agoread more

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Pipara village in the parched Bundelkhand region stands out for its uninterrupted water supply. The village has their women to thank for it.

The cracks on the parched land of Bundelkhand are waiting for the monsoon to quench the thirst of its arid landscape. Despite the wide-spread drought here, Pipara, one of the villages in the region, stands apart as the only one that has not run completely dry. 

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Tonk Khurd’s innovative farm ponds prove that when it comes to solving water crisis, one size does not fit all.

Vikram Patel, a 71-year-old farmer in Chidavad village of Dewas district in Madhya Pradesh is one of the first farmers to have embraced the idea of farm ponds to increase the groundwater level in his farm.

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Mangrove plantations in coastal Odisha are not just protecting people from storms and cyclones, but also opening up new livelihood possibilities.

Kendrapara and Jagatsinghpur are among the most vulnerable districts affected by cyclones and climate change in coastal Odisha. In the last few decades, the coasts of Odisha have witnessed three major devastating storms. The Super Cyclone, Cyclone Phailin and the Cyclone HudHud all severely disrupted the livelihoods of communities in the region.

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Thanks to the successful implementation of the Rural Water Supply and Sanitation (RWSS) scheme, villagers began to believe in collective action and community development.

Since India became independent in 1947, the central and state governments have introduced various rural development schemes, and have been trying to get them to converge. While this effort hasn't been as impactful on a large scale, there are some success stories. Sarda Panchayat in Sambalpur, Odisha is one.   

 

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Understanding the life cycles of vegetarian and non-vegetarian insects is key to keeping the natural balance in crop cycles. Farmers in Haryana who have studied this phenomenon, explain.

Every night, an incandescent bulb lights up the terrace room of a house in Lalitkhera village in Haryana. Insects from the adjoining pond swarm to this solitary bright spot under which Sheila Devi sits with a cup and saucer in her hand. She traps these insects one at a time to study their physical traits while other family members sleep. 

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Celebrations for World Water Day 2016 in Nagaon, Assam personify passion by honouring grassroots water-workers for their thankless efforts.

"A job isn’t just a job. It’s who you are". That quote seems to define the five people who are being honoured for their extraordinary dedication in ensuring water to the people in Nagaon and the newly declared Hojai district of Assam.

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Roadways construction affected the natural water drainage and blocked canals since 1980. Recent restoration works has infused life back into two villages in Madhuban Gram Panchayat.

Water logging has been a persistent problem for farmers in the coastal areas of Puri, Odisha. Construction of national highways has affected the natural water drainage system and has changed the lands of thousands of farmers since 1980. Nobody noticed that the Ratnachira river and other natural canals that led to the Chilika Lake were also torn apart in the process of constructing roads.

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Women are not only responsible for water but they also face the brunt of water scarcity. Watch the video to find out what happens when these women become 'Jal Sahelis' (water friends).

Sirkoo, a 39 year old woman in Bundelkhand, Uttar Pradesh, walked 8 km every day to fetch water. As a woman, it was obviously her responsibility to ensure the household's water availability. This put an additional stress on her already depleted health as well as time--until she decided to tackle the issue head on.

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Simon Oraon, leading a people’s movement to save water and forests in Ranchi, Jharkhand

It was 1961. Simon Oraon, a Class IV school drop-out began his journey against drought in Bedo, a tribal block of Ranchi, Jharkhand. An idealistic young man, he along with his fellow villagers began constructing earthen dams to capture rainwater for recharging groundwater. This along with his broader work on self-initiated environmental and forest protection systems provided a tipping point that rejuvenated the forests and brought the wells and surface water bodies back to life.

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Flood affected areas in coastal Odisha have adopted new ways of farming. Called floating gardens, these have the scope to reduce the food insecurities of the landless poor.

The coastal district of Puri in Odisha is infested with water hyacinth. In 1982, 10 million people and 3 million hectares of agricultural land was affected by floods causing the water hyacinth to increase to such an extent that it has affected the lives and livelihood of communities for almost three decades.

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