Western Uttar Pradesh with the National Capital Territory has been blessed to be located in the doab of the holy River Ganga and River Yamuna. This region famous as one of the most fertile regions over the Globe has always been lased with immense natural resources and a green cover all over. The region has over half a dozen rivers flowing through it and is sanctified with over a lakh small and big water sources. But the recent past has seen these sources extensively being polluted.
NEER Foundation, Meerut in associating itself with the marking of the World Environment Federation, USA and International Water Association, Neatherlands organised the water monitoring event (World Water Monitoring Day) in various cities of the region namely Meerut, Gaziabad, Bulandshehar, Muzaffarnagar, Baghpat, Etah, Aligarh, Agra and the National Capital Delhi.
The Foundation was provided with 8 Water Testing Kits by Ms. Francis Lukraft, the Program Coordinator for this International Event on Water Monitoring. The program was launched at various levels and extensive monitoring had taken place over the extended window which initiated in June and ended in November 2009. It was done in association with various schools involving over 700 school children. It was also done at a different level involving various non governmental organisations indulging over 200 activists towards this noble cause. The students and activists were chosen in a way so as to touch upon not only the upper class but the important stakeholders of the society in the forms of minorities and dalits. A huge percentage of people involved were from a rural background.
The major water sources covered during this long campaign included Rivers Ganga, Yamuna, Kali, Krishni, Hindon, Dhamela etc. It also included Ganga Canal, Sanjay Gandhi Lake, the Historical Gandhari Lake, Nawaldeh Well, Hand-pumps, Submersible Pumps, Severs and various other fresh water sources. These sources were chosen as these are the ones which the residents relate to for different activities like water for domestic use, irrigation etc.
The results were deeply saddening and pitiful indicating towards the water sources going dead. The chemicals flowing with the water course is demeaning the water quality to the depressing levels. The hazards like water borne diseases which are increasing were clearly connected to the results. This was well tested in over 400 samples from 112 different sources.
The schools associated with the program are Shri Dayaleshwar Public School, Meerut; K V Public School, Parikshitgarh; Mahakavi Saraswati Sishu Mandir, Hapur; DAV Public School, Budhana; Bal Bhawan Public School, Delhi, Bharti Public School, Delhi and Ryan International, Delhi.
In addition to this, the various organisations who actively participated in the program and without whom this program could not have reached such a large strata of society are worth a mention herein as Jan Kalyan Sansthan, Meerut, Nature Foundation (India), Delhi; Research and Relief Society, Meerut; Samiksha, Gaziabad; and Parivartan, Ghazaiabad.
The children who got involved with the program were pretty excited to conduct these programs themselves and looking at the results, they were highly sensitised towards the present condition of water sources and took an oath to save water in every way possible at their levels.