Celebrated Indian screenwriter and film producer Kiran Rao is the co-founder of the Paani Foundation — a “people’s movement” aiming to make a large portion of India drought-free.
Based in Maharashtra, an area home to 112 million people, the charity equips villagers with technical know-how and leadership skills to tackle the issue of drought in their villages. It has made simple training films, an Android App and training manuals on topics ranging from ‘making your own hydromarker’ to constructing continuous contour trenches and building soak pits.
The charity also runs an annual competition, the Satyamev Jayate Water Cup, to see which villages can do the most for watershed management and water conservation in one year. In 2018, more than 4,000 villages took part, training over 20,000 people and building 22,269 crore litres of water storage (one crore litre is equal to 10 million litres).
“Man, not nature, is largely responsible for this drought crisis,” the Foundation writes on its website, noting that social fracture is the biggest problem to fix.
“In these past four years, what started as an experiment has become a movement of which we now are merely a small part. The efforts of the villagers themselves have ensured that a water revolution is not far away”.Tags: Drought, India, water