Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, Minister of Jal Shakti: Declare a #WaterEmergency across India

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Imagine a world where people have no access to clean, drinking water. One where we'd have to fight tooth and nail for a single bucket of water meant to meet the entire daily needs of a family of 4.

Now imagine you and your family having to live this reality in the near future. Do I have your attention?

  • 21 Indian cities will run out of groundwater by 2020
  • Chennai, India’s 6th largest city has already run out of water
    Is it even fit for the 9 million people who call the city their home to live there anymore? People are already bashing each other with buckets and pots in a fight over this precious, finite resource. 
  • 10-year-old Siddharth, a class II student from Aurangabad, walks 14 km every day to get 2 cans of water when most of us don’t need to move a finger.

Look at the image above. Can you even imagine struggling that much to get the water you use everyday?  

The war over water, the cause of world war 3, a phrase that brings alive our worst fears is not so far fetched anymore. Each one of us bears responsibility for creating this situation. 

I've been trying to change people's mindset towards water as a resource for over 4 years through my organisation Why Waste? (www.whywaste.io). I have learnt the key reason for this problem through all the work we do. The simple fact is, people have no appreciation or value for a resource that is handed to them conveniently. From the moment we wake up to the time we fall asleep, water plays a key role in everything we do and it is impossible to live without it. 

Sign my petition asking our government to declare a water emergency before it is too late.

The current water crisis is a problem we have all created together through our actions and negligence. Instead of blaming, let’s start changing. Instead of figuring out who caused the problem, let’s get together and do our bit to solve this issue. 

Policy change at the government level including subsidising/incentivising water conservation efforts at the local/constituency/community level - Rainwater harvesting, lake and water body regeneration, groundwater recharging, the formation of urban forests and setting up a water conservation body in each constituency can create the necessary path to regain this resource

Further, educating people and communities on the issue is the need of the hour. Making them accept the ground reality, inspiring them to act, optimise water usage, prevent wastage, recycle and thereby conserve water through govt. supported citizen-led programs can parallelly increase the involvement of every individual in doing their bit to make a difference. 

Sign this petition primarily to the Ministry of Jal Shakti and to the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change to take a stand. Let them help and support citizen-led water conservation efforts and movements. Let’s declare a Water Emergency so that everyone wakes up and comes together to take charge and solve this issue. 

As a 19-year-old, I want to secure the future for my generation and those who come after. We cannot afford to deny this harsh reality anymore. Let’s solve the water crisis together before a war breaks out! 

 

 

Image credits - Indian news outlets.