By Sunny Chordia:
Maharashtra has been hit by the worst drought in last 100 years. Groundwater levels are depleting, and reservoirs lie empty. There is no water left for drinking in these parts, and those suffering have to manage survival with only a bucket of water for a week!
People are migrating towards cities, animals are dying of thirst, lands lie barren, and almost nothing is left. The government has been trying to supply water via tankers to the affected towns, but their efforts are not up to the mark.
I am an engineering student from Pune. I along with a team of other students and professors have together started an initiative called ‘Tahaan.’ Looking at the horrible situations that plague Maharashtra today we couldn’t wait for authorities to do something and set out on a mission to supply water to these drought affected areas.
We as are not registered as an NGO and are simply a group of students who have picked out the water-deprived areas of Northen Baramati given that the conditions there are atrocious. Our aim is to supply about 200 liters of water per family once every six days to provide some relief to the people.
Tankers are used to supply water, and these are filled up at Baramati City. Now, the issues we are facing are multiple and diverse. Often clusters of four to five families live in small hamlets in and around these towns and these people need to travel around seven to eight kilometers to get to the city where they can collect water. Quite often, by the time they reach, we have already run out of our stock, and they have to return empty handed.
Also due to such climatic conditions tire bursts are quite common, and if that happens, the tankers are no good as they can’t get water to anyone. This is why we plan to gather more tankers so that we can make more trips and reach more people and even in cases of tire bursts we have some backup. The cost of a water tanker is two thousand rupees, and we plan to gather a total of eight tankers which can be employed to bring relief to eight different places. Funds are being raised all over India and abroad with many NGOs like enlighten, rotract, Sikhiindia, IDF, vyuh, and also some bands and radio channel are supporting this movement.
However, we are still looking out for more volunteers and donations to take this initiative ahead at a speed which it needs. If you want to know more about our initiative, Tahaan, do visit our Facebook page.