With World Water Day being observed on March 22, it is time for all of us to move from tokenism to action. A look by S.Vishwanath

The U.N. celebrates March 22 of every year as World Water Day. This is to focus attention and draw the need for more solutions to manage the critical water resource under threat from over exploitation and pollution. This year the theme is water and food security. The website www.unwater.org/worldwaterday provides much information on the theme.

This year too many organisations will host World Water Day events. The Goethe Institute in Bangalore is hosting a photographic exhibition on the open wells of the city of Bangalore followed by a panel discussion and a film screening on water. The Karnataka Urban Water Supply and Drainage Board and the Dayanand Sagar College of Engineering are organising a seminar to bring together experts to discuss how to address the water scarcity facing our society.

Water harvesting

The theme park on rainwater harvesting set up by the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board in Jayanagar is a unique information centre in the country. It provides a one-stop glimpse of the various ways rainwater can be harvested, grey water can be recycled and reused and water used sparsely and wisely.

For those interested in water issues, especially school children and college students, this place is a must visit.

Educative and fun

The India Water Portal, an initiative of the NGO Arghyam, organised a very interesting event involving teachers and school children in testing water for fluoride in their respective areas. The event was then posted on Facebook, the social media site, http://www.facebook.com/groups/343173525711240/. As can be seen from the site, students found the process not only educative but also fun. They could also share the event with friends and build water literacy.

As a society we must develop a more water-literate generation. If in an apartment or a layout or even in a neighbourhood it is a nice opportunity to organise a small discussion on water issues and how everybody can contribute to a solution with new ideas.

Especially for schools and colleges, the U.N. water site provides plenty of education materials in the form of posters, fact sheets and videos. These can be used effectively and in a fun manner to reach out to students.

The news is full of water shortages and villages and neighbourhoods being supplied water through tankers when summer has just begun. We need to crowd source and find ideas and get everybody to be part of the solution.

The World Water Day on March 22 should move from tokenism to action. That is the only way to have sustainable availability of water for all in India.

www.rainwaterclub.org; zenrainman@gmail.com

Keywords: World Water Day