Depleting groundwater level a cause of concern, says Jichkar
Nagpur: Faced with unprecedented water crisis in the Second Capital City of Nagpur, the Mayor Nanda Jichkar appealed citizens to install rainwater harvesting system in large scale to increase groundwater level. “If we fail to understand importance of water today, perilous situation stares us in future,” the Mayor warned.
Jichkar was addressing a meeting held on Friday at Dr Panjabrao Deshmukh Hall of Nagpur Municipal Corporation. The meeting discussed water crisis and depleting groundwater level in city. The meeting decided to constitute a special committee in the name ‘Save Water, Harvest Water’ to promote the cause of rainwater harvesting in the city. Many office-bearers and experts made several suggestions including increasing tax burden on those not installing rainwater harvesting system.
Those others who attended the meeting include Tanaji Wanve, Leader of Opposition in NMC; Ravindra Thakre, Additional Municipal Commissioner; Vijay alias Pintu Zalke, Chairman of Water Works Committee; Abhay Gotekar, Chairman of Estate Committee; Prakash Bhoyar, Chairman of Laxmi NagarZone; Amar Bagde, Chairman of Dharampeth Zone; Madhuri Thakre, Chairperson of Hanuman Nagar Zone; Lata Kadgaye, Chairperson of Dhantoli Zone; Vandana Yengatwar, Chairperson of Gandhibagh Zone; Abhiruchi Rajgire, Chairperson of Satranjipura Zone; Viranka Bhivgade, Chairperson of Ashi NagarZone; and Gargi Chopra, Chairperson of Mangalwari Zone, Deputy Commissioner Rajesh Mohite, Superintending Engineer Manoj Talewar and other officials.
The Mayor invited suggestions from the experts attending the meeting. Abhay Gotekar suggested to increase property tax burden on those the property-owners who did not install rain water harvesting system. Vijay Zalke suggested to make amendments in the town planning rules. Bhoyar suggested to make the facilities regarding rainwater harvesting easily available to the people. Rohit Deshpande, an expert, said that NMC should provide a map/graphic design alongwith water bills to guide the people on how to install rainwater harvesting system. Also, groundwater level should be improved by way of making utilisation of water accumulating on roads. This will also reduce waterlogging on streets, he added.
Kaustav Chatterjee of Green Vigil Foundation said that people should reuse the water utilised for bathing and washing utensils or clothes, for flushing purposes. Dr Devendra Gawande,anofficial of Nagpur Smart and Sustainable City Development Corporation Limited, suggested to make a special design with the help of experts. Vinod Verma, Past District Governor of Lions Club, informed the meeting about the initiative of the club to improve groundwater level. Leena Budhe urged NMC to create awareness on the issue. Abhishek Sharma spoke on Japanese technology on rainwater harvesting.
After listening to the suggestions, Jichkar said that NMC would constitute a committee to create awareness among people about rainwater harvesting. She said that rainwater harvesting was need of the hour, owing to prevailing water crisis that was a result of inadequate and irregular rainfall. There is a provision in Development Control Regulations of the city that makes it mandatory to install rainwater harvesting system in any building. But, she rued, the developers and citizens did not respond well to it. “Now, we are left with no option but to harvest rainwater for our own good. Hence, rainwater harvesting should become a public movement,” she added.