Krishna District Additional Joint Collector N. Ramesh Kumar on Wednesday said raising the awareness level among people on the dire need to conserve water resources is the need of the hour.

Addressing a meeting organised to mark valediction of the week-long Jalambadi, at Nalanda Vidya Niketan, Mr. Kumar said water is an important resource and every individual must try and conserve water in the best possible ways.

He expressed concern over water wastage on a large-scale and pointed to the manner in which huge quantities were let out in the sea. “We must think of ways to recycle used water,” he emphasised, adding that educating children at a young age on this key issue could go a long way in achieving the target.

Deputy Director of Ground Water Department A. Varaprasad Rao, said Jalambadi was first introduced last year in Krishna district with an aim to create awareness among students on efficient water management and conservation.

Speaking about a specially designed methodology to create awareness by the department, he elaborated on a ‘concept paper’ which was distributed among schools with an instruction that it should be read out in the school assembly time and children must be made to take oath on water conservation.

“Last year, nearly 2 lakh-odd students from 396 high schools across the district took the oath.

This year a higher target to cover 500 schools under the drive was set up,” he informed. As part of the water conservation drive, the department officials organised various activities for school children in essay writing, drawing and chitti kavitalu (short poems). To involve teachers in the programme, a separate poetry contest was conducted for them.

A total of 743 students from 42 Government, Zilla Parishad and aided schools participated in the event. A separate contest was organised for students of private schools at the city-level.

Prizes were given to winners of the events. On the sidelines, an exhibition on ground water related issues was organised.

The exhibits comprised nearly 30 rock samples, a rain-gauge station, a cup animo metre, double ring infiltro metres and resistivity metre.

Mr. Rao said impressed by the feat of a large number of students collectively taking oath to save water, the Telugu Book Records authorities had expressed willingness to accord the event a place in the record book.

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