We in India may be some times slow in making progress. But not always. Example: what happened in Rahimatpur on 29th April 2012.
Stream Restoration Project
Kamandalu Rivulet of Rahimatpur-Western India
30 Jan 2010
This project proposal is about the water stream restoration project envisioned for the rivulet called ‘Kamandalu” –a tributary of major River-Krishna in India. The rivulet runs through the town of Rahimatpur in District Satara, State of Maharashtra. I am quite attached to this project and also to the town where I studied as student for some years .
The present state of this rivulet is witness of the adverse impacts of so called development and growth in the Indian towns. People of Rahimatpur, nearly three decades back, were dependent on water of this rivulet for drinking as well as for other purposes.. Hence the rivulet was maintained well by the people of the town. I used to carry the water from rivulet to my house in the pots when I was student there. Then as part of the town development, in 70’s the water distribution scheme was implemented in Rahimatpur. The water from river Krishna is now pumped, filtered, stored and distributed by pipes to the households. As the tapped water is now available for last 30 years, the Kamandalu rivulet is totally neglected and is used as dumping place for the solid waste from the town and to let the drainage flow into the rivulet. This has created health hazard, loss of water body, loss of flora and fauna and natural resource for the population of the town.
Expected outcomes of the water stream restoration project will include improved health and sanitation conditions, improved riverine ecosystem, improved quality of water, minimize and hopefully eliminate the stream contamination and pollution arising from tributaries of the stream originating from the town, possible harvesting of useful biomass from around the stream buffer area, re-establishing the living character of stream water, improving biodiversity which will help the surrounding agriculture as well. One major benefit would be effective waste management of the town which at present uses the rivulet for dumping the town waste.
The scope includes capacity building measures for all the stakeholders to ensure participative approach in designing and operating the restoration, survey and detailed assessment of land use and water use, ensuring measures and interventions such as root zoning, introduction of in-stream vegetation, bank stabilization through introduction on riparian vegetation, energy plantation for tributary de-contamination, introducing grasses and reeds for harvesting as also sanitation facilities for the upstream temple complex, measures to minimize impact of social events like annual festivals and weekly bazaars etc.
This proposal therefore targets an integrated approach to remedy and help local stakeholder groups initiate and sustain preventive management of its water resource. The logical framework that binds these interventions highlights the need for locally relevant practices guided by empirical evidences regarding the qualitative and quantitative profiles of the resource and the impacts of perturbations.
Duration of the proposed project is for 3 year and expects at the end of this period to have consolidated local capacity to continue to monitor and manage ongoing progress of the stream and associated natural assets. The idea is to develop capacity with field work for restoration whereby the local community looks at water source as a central theme in overall land use and other civic services planning.