Over exploitation and wastage of water has resulted in a decrease of groundwater levels but the ‘Jal Budget’ model changed the lives in the ravine village of Farol Nagariya (Block and District Firozabad, Uttar Pradesh, India).
In Firozabad, Uttar Pradesh, I have introduced a“water budget” at the village council level as an important step towards conserving water. I started this at a village named Farol Nagariya (Block Firozabad). Every household has prepared a water budget to prevent wastage of water. The village council had passed a resolution for the same.
This village is located in the ravine area on the banks of river Yamuna where villagers face water shortage during summer and groundwater level drops down to more than 160 ft. I started ‘Water Classes’ to make the villagers aware of the ground realities as well as educate them about the importance of water conservation, planting of various crops, like maize in summer, which require a lot of water and about the hazards of plastics.
I am working hard to convince them to save more water than the amount they consume. They have taken a keen interest and have started to work on the implementation of ‘Jal Budget’. I follow a basic mantra that comprises awareness, campaigns and education (ACE) to make any movement successful and the one which directly benefits the people.
The Village Council Headman Mr Aji Ram Rajpoot, Technical Assistant Mr Shiv Kumar and Village Secretary Mr Mukesh Yadav have started the required water conservation steps and have dug soak pits in every house.
They have also created ponds and mini check dams to create a reservoir of water. Large scale afforestation was also done in order to enhance the water holding capacity and to reduce erosion and surface runoff. Likewise, the success of this village has been replicated in the district level.
Chief Development Officer Ms Neha Jain who is an IAS officer has issued an order for all the six water-stressed blocks to replicate this model in all the water-stressed villages. The aim is to ‘save every drop of water before it gets wasted’.
Our sustained efforts are showing results. People are using water in a more sustainable manner. Such steps will make the Jal Shakti Abhiyan more strong at the grassroots level.