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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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Parineeta Dandekar of SANDRP speaks to India Water Portal about how healthy rivers--and not dams--are the best employment guarantees around.

The theme for the 2016 UN World Water Day is 'Water and Jobs'. What is your opinion of the chosen theme?

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Deepak Sanan, one of the flag bearers of community led total sanitation (CLTS), believes that collective behaviour change works more than individual grants. Himachal Pradesh is a case in point.

In recent years, especially after the launch of major programmes like Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, sanitation has become a hotly debated topic in India. Crores of rupees have gone into building toilets but they remain unused, villages that were declared open defecation free (ODF) are unable to sustain that, and sewage treatment continues to be a big challenge. In such a scenario, community led total sanitation (CLTS) offers a different approach.

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Privatisation of water services has resulted in raised costs, poor quality and unreliable service--not just in India but around the world. The film tells India's and America's story.

In January 2016, the Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) Employees Union and residents of Nagpur yet again protested the privatisation of water services in the city. They demanded the remunicipalisation of their water services since the tall claims made by private operator Veolia Water (India) Pvt Ltd of improving the city's water services have failed after its initiation in June 2006 as a pilot programme. 

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How is the MP government going to handle the water, sanitation and solid waste issues at the Mela? Diwakar Natu, Chairman of the Mela Authority talks to India Water Portal.

The Ujjain Simhastha Kumbh Mahaparva is one of the four Kumbha Melas, which is held once in 12 years.

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Manoj Misra speaks on the much neglected area of the Yamuna river and its floodplains and why its mere clean-up is not enough--especially as the World Culture Festival approaches.

Recent permission granted to the Art of Living to hold the World Culture Festival in the Yamuna floodplains points fingers yet again at the fact that not much has been done to assure its safety. The rapid encroachment of the Yamuna floodplain has raised a few questions. Can the river sustain the rampant commercialisation of its floodplains? Are there national or state legislations that provide statutory protection to rivers as an ecological entity? Manoj Misra of Yamuna Jiye Abhiyaan discusses some of these issues.

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The film titled 'A Hand Pump' tells the story of the villagers of Padapadar, Odisha and their struggle to finally get their right to safe drinking water.

"More than eight villagers in Padapadar have died due to water-borne diseases such as typhoid, diarrhoea, jaundice, etc. in last five years", says Bir Mallick, an active member of Jeevika Suraksha Manch (JSM), an organisation working on tribal rights in Kandhamal district, Odisha. As per a report by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, more than 1000 people have died and over a million have been affected by water-borne diseases due to contaminated water sources in Odisha.

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Constructing naulas, the small structures that house springs in Uttarakhand, requires an intimate knowledge of many sciences. One of the last practitioners of this dying craft tells his story.

No temple is as venerated in Uttarakhand as the little unassuming naulas. These small hut-like structures dot the mountains and hold within them a great treasure--water. Usually made of stone masonry with pyramid-like slate roofs, every naula respresents within it a residing spirit which can range from a simple stone piece to an ornately carved statue. Often, there is also an alcove big enough for a lamp. Inside, the naulas are shaped like a step-well. The number of steps--always odd in count--are usually 3, 5, 7 or more.

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Anita Sharma and Anil Gautam of Peoples Science Institute, Dehradun talk about their work with fluoride affected communities in Madhya Pradesh.

What is the exact problem as regards fluoride contamination in Madhya Pradesh, particularly in Dhar district?

A continuous level of 1.5 mg/l and above of fluoride in drinking water is considered hazardous for the health of bones and teeth. In Madhya Pradesh 27 districts are affected with fluoride contamination.

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Researchers at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) share the findings of a study on water filter use in Ahmedabad, Gujarat and discuss its implications in India's overall context.

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