Jaisalmer is a water starved desert district of Rajasthan. With 7 out of 10 years witnessing drought, water is an issue close to the heart of rural population. This is a story of Village Pohra, demonstrating how the lives of the families changed by applying concerted efforts to overcome water scarcity.
To overcome this problem, Suzlon through its CSR applied two-fold solution. One was to help the villagers to build cement water tanks by providing material support and the other was increasing availability of water by constructing check dam.
In Pohra like many other villages in Jaisalmer, water by tanker is available due to Indira Canal passing through the district. However, there is no storage facility even if the tanker is provided. Plastic tanks are of no use as the extreme weather conditions shorten their life. Suzlon offered to provide material support to construct cement tanks, if the families pitched in with the labour. The needy families were identified by the Village Development Committee and over the course of 2008-09 years 10 cement tanks were constructed benefitting 10 families. The direct benefit is reduction in the drudgery of women and especially girls who can go to school now that they don’t have to fetch water.
Recently, Suzlon constructed a check dam in the village. Here too, the VDC president supervised the construction work and made sure that the quality was maintained throughout. The site was ideal as lot of rainwater is accumulated in this area. The work was completed in 4 months. The district collector too visited and supervised the work. In the monsoon of 2016, 1 lakh cubic meter water has been collected in the dam. This will provide 6 to 7 months’ water security to 110 families of the village.
Water availability, for drinking as well as agriculture, has changed the lives the villagers.