People and Organisations

  • Jammu and Kashmir is the only state in India where forest fires are reported almost every season. As per Indian state of forest report 2017, India saw a 46 percent increase in the number of forest fires in the last 16 years. Forest fires not only affect the flora and fauna of the region bu...
    makarandpurohitposted 9 months 2 weeks agoread more
  • Uday Mandrekar (40) is a popular boatman on the Chorao island of Goa. He is known for his formidable knowledge on birds in the area so much so that he is often referred to as the bird man of Chorao. He is a private boatman and a tourist guide who can take you deep into the mangroves and waterways of...
    makarandpurohitposted 9 months 2 weeks agoread more
  • The Erai river, the main tributary of the Wardha river, is the lifeline for the people of Chandrapur in Maharashtra. It primarily supplies water to the Chandrapur city and Chandrapur super thermal power station (CSTPS). Since 1984, after the initiation of operations of M/s C...
    makarandpurohitposted 10 months 4 days agoread more
  • In Maharashtra, a “Water Cup competition” held annually by Paani Foundation started by film star Aamir Khan and his team is compelling everyone working in the water sector to take serious note of it. Paani Foundation was set up with the aim of making Maharashtra drought-free through water conse...
    Eshwer Kaleposted 10 months 1 week agoread more
  • Basanti Haldar (45) has been living in a slum at Kalikapur in Kolkata for over two decades. She works as a domestic help in an upscale locality in the neighbourhood. She is happy nowadays due to an increase in her income.  The installation of Automated Dispensing Units (ADU) has not only provi...
    arathiposted 10 months 2 weeks agoread more
  • On March 16, 2017, the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India began a performance audit of the National Rural Drinking Water Programme (NRDWP) by discussing with the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation the scope and methodology of the performance audit. Records relating to the implemen...
    arathiposted 11 months 1 week agoread more
  • At the age of 70, Renupada Bagdi of Doniapur village in Birbhum district of West Bengal is on a mission to convince his fellow farmers to take up organic farming just like he did a few years ago. He knows from his experience that chemical fertilisers do not yield crops as big companies make it out t...
    arathiposted 11 months 1 week agoread more
  • The Department of Science and Technology (DST) has established a centre of excellence on climate change research for plant protection at the Hyderabad-based International Crop Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT). Its objective will be to help make agriculture more resilient to vag...
    arathiposted 11 months 2 weeks agoread more
  • Dr G.D. Agrawal passed away on October 11, 2018. He was 86 years old. But he didn’t die of old age. After 111 days of fasting, he died of a heart attack. Why was he fasting? We will come to that in a while.  I knew him as G.D. Sir. A man who taught me concepts and practice of environmental s...
    arathiposted 11 months 2 weeks agoread more
  • On March 16, 2017, the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India began a performance audit of the National Rural Drinking Water Programme (NRDWP) by discussing with the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation the scope and methodology of the performance audit. Records relating to the implemen...
    arathiposted 11 months 3 weeks agoread more
  • The interstate dispute between Odisha and Chhattisgarh over the Mahanadi's water is an ongoing one and it looks like both the state governments have no interest in finding a long-term solution. It all started with the Chhattisgarh government constructing six barrages on the upstream of the Mahanadi...
    makarandpurohitposted 1 year 1 month agoread more
  • A resident of Bajankheda village in Ratlam district of Madhya Pradesh, Sitabai Tindor shows her pot full of water to us. A strange red, the water looks unusual. “We have been using this red water for domestic use for the last two decades. Industries in Ratlam has spoilt our land and water. The gov...
    makarandpurohitposted 1 year 2 months agoread more
  • Basubai is a mother of three young children—Ajay (9), Manju (11) and Sonu (13). She is married to Mukesh Singh in Jamniamota village in Bakaner block in Dhar district, Madhya Pradesh. Annoyed by the yellowing and staining of the teeth of her children, she would always complain to her husband ...
    arathiposted 1 year 2 months agoread more
  • Manohar in Talabpura village of Dhar district in Madhya Pradesh came up with the decision to make a double pit latrine. He is indeed a multi-talented person. He is good at painting work and also has a creative mind to design such a latrine for his family. He had heard about twin pit latrines from on...
    arathiposted 1 year 2 months agoread more
  • A growing demand for water implies the need for an improved understanding of our resources, and the ability to manage that demand in an equitable and sustainable way. Wells, not dams, have been the temples of modern India India is a groundwater economy. At 260 cubic km per year, our country is the...
    priyadposted 1 year 2 months agoread more
  • Since April this year, Swabhav Natak Dal has been travelling with a play about Rivers and Waters. 12 shows of the Bangla version of this play – Raakhe Nodi Maare Ke – were performed in schools, shelter homes for children, organizations working on environmental issues, as well as c...
    priyadposted 1 year 3 months agoread more
  • There seems to be no end to the drinking water crisis in the Bemetara district in Chhattisgarh. It is only becoming worse with every passing day. More than 40 percent of all the hand pumps installed in the district have run dry due to the depletion of groundwater level.   This situation h...
    makarandpurohitposted 1 year 4 months agoread more
  • Phoolbasan Yadav from the remote Sukaldaihan village in the Rajnandgaon district in Chhattisgarh shot to fame for her untiring effort in empowering the women of her village. "Since my childhood, I had experienced extreme poverty and hunger, and I feel that similar is the plight of lakhs of women...
    makarandpurohitposted 1 year 4 months agoread more
  • Gopal Nishad, a fisherman in his early 40s, is frustrated that there is hardly any fish left in the Mahanadi’s basin at Pitaibandh due to the lack of water in the basin. This basin is located near Rajim-Nawapara in Chhattisgarh, the proposed site for the fourth anicut on the Mahanadi. He reminisce...
    makarandpurohitposted 1 year 5 months agoread more
  • Every year, thousands of villages in Maharashtra get affected by droughts. Experts say that the reasons for recurrent droughts include a lack of policy framework, technical knowledge and community participation as well as poor implementation of government programmes. Until 1970, the residents of Ka...
    makarandpurohitposted 1 year 7 months agoread more

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A million recharge wells for Bangalore

Vishwanath Srikantaiah, popularly known as the 'Rainman', has been in the news recently for his ambitious project to build one million recharge wells in Bengaluru. Given the dire situation we find ourselves in vis-à-vis water, the initiative could not have come at a better time.

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Collective action games trigger conversations around the nature of the invisible and immeasurable common pool resource - groundwater.

India is, by far, the world’s largest groundwater economy. India’s annual withdrawal of fresh groundwater (253 Billion Cubic Metres in 2013) amounts to one fourth of the global total and is more than that of China and the US combined. Over 80% of water extracted is used in agriculture. The share of tubewells in net irrigated area rose from a mere 1% in 1960-61 to over 40% in 2013-14.

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A young college graduate shares his experience working with Tata Trusts in Assam on water issues.

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CHIRAG in Uttarakhand works with communities to revive local springs to achieve water security.

In popular imagination, steeped in consumer culture, the hills are exotic and aesthetically sublime places to find solace away from busy urban life. This kind of imagination conveniently ignores and de-contextualizes the hills and the problems they face today. The Himalayas, often known as the Water Tower of Asia, are revered because many of the world's important rivers originate from them. However, Himalayan states are not untouched by water problems and the overarching effects of climate change, which respect no borders.

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INREM Foundation and The Fluoride Network have worked in Chikkaballapur extensively, to battle the problem of fluoride contamination in groundwater.

Chikkaballapur is a district in the state of Karnataka, just north of the capital Bengaluru. A peri-urban area that was once an agricultural centre for this region, today Chikkaballapur is facing a unique problem. 

Decreasing rainfall has meant increasing periods of drought for this area, which in turn has caused residents to dig deeper and deeper in search of water. In this pursuit for groundwater, they have found water… but it is contaminated with fluoride.

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Piramal Sarvajal's water ATMs are a good example of community-level decentralised drinking water solutions that are sustainable.

According to WASH watch report (2017), over 150 million people in India live without access to safe drinking water. A majority of these people reside in underserved or unserved sections of the society that lives beyond the pipe. As a result, they are dependent on water sources that are not safe for drinking, leading to waterborne diseases. Diarrhoea continues to be a leading cause of death in children below the age of five. As per data, approximately 321 children deaths are reported every day in India (WHO, 2015). 

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Chemical contamination of drinking water is a significant health concern in India, one we haven’t realised the magnitude of. Practitioners across sectors must come together to tackle this issue.

Fluoride, arsenic, nitrate, and other chemicals in drinking water pose significant health risks (such as fluorosis and arsenicosis) to our population.

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Three environment-friendly ways of disposing of human waste have proven effective in various districts of Chhattisgarh.

According to the Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM) website, access to toilets has improved in India and 28 out of 36 states and Union Territories are now open defecation free (ODF). While that’s good news, managing faecal sludge in ODF states in an eco-friendly way continues to be a big challenge. 

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Though the statistics and numbers from the Swachh Bharat Mission indicate success, there are still gaps within the programme that need to be examined.

One of the most laudable initiatives of the current government’s regime is the Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM) that was launched on Oct 2, 2014, with a larger vision of a clean India. The critical aspect of the mission was that—unlike many of the movements that preceded it—this had a measurable outcome (making India open defecation free) and a firm timeline (by 2019).

"Prior to this, urban sanitation was a space largely neglected by policy makers."

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The film, The Naga Pride tells the story of the transformation of a Naga tribe from being Amur falcon hunters to protectors.

Amur falcons are among the strongest fliers in the avian world. Since the last 25 years, they have been migrating to the Northeast especially Nagaland from Siberia en route to their final destination—Somalia, Kenya and South Africa. 

In 2013, the researchers estimated that between 1,20,000 and 1,40,000 Amur falcons were being trapped and killed for human consumption in the Nagaland and the Wokha districts every year.

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