This Bengaluru-based activist is restoring and recharging old wells to save the city from a water crisis
According to a report by Niti Aayog, Bengaluru will be one of the metro cities that will run out of the water by 2020.
While this is an alarming situation, reflecting the way we have exploited our natural resources, not much has been done either by the State government or the citizens to save the existing water bodies.
In this hour of crisis, Vishwanath Srikantaiah, a water activist and urban planner from Bengaluru, has come up with a plan to save the city from the impending water crisis.
Vishwanath Srikantaiah is a water activist and urban planner (Image:The Straits Times).
Working in collaboration with local communities, 55-year-old Vishwanath has successfully made 10,000 wells functional with the help of well-diggers in the city. Further, around 100,000 recharge wells have also been developed at the city level, and they have set a target to reach a million very soon.
Speaking to The Logical Indian, he said,
“These recharge wells will use rooftop rainwater and send it into the aquifers, helping groundwater conditions to improve. It will also help the traditional well diggers get a better livelihood.”
Vishwanath is credited with the designing of several rooftop water harvesting structures for households and industries across Karnataka as well. Besides, he is also an active member of the Rainwater Club since 1995.
When asked about water conservation, he said,
“For every square metre of roof area, one has to create 20 litres of storage of recharge, and for every square metre of the paved area around the building, one has to create 10 litres of storage for recharge. The recharge well should be a minimum of 10 feet.”
On the same note, he has also developed a filter called VARUN for purifying rainwater.
Vishwanath has also restored some old wells in Cubbon Park in Bengaluru. Commenting on the same, he said,
“We identified seven wells through something called the Karagadabavi, which is one of the oldest wells, where the Karaga festival begins. We were then able to revive it with traditional well-diggers. These wells can give 65,000 to 100,000 litres of water a day for the park, and is done with citizen participation. The money is being raised by the India Cares Foundation, with a group called Friends of Lakes,” reports Straits Times.
Bengaluru, which has been under the grip of a water crisis, requires some immediate efforts for water conservation.
“With the current crippling water crisis, rejuvenating water bodies, growing water-efficient crops, and recycling waste water are possible ways to avoid the recurrence of such an acute water crisis in future,” Dr Vishwanath told The Logical Indian.