and Merukukottakudi villges, Ramanathapuram district,
When modern water supply methods failed to deliver water to villages
in Ramanathapuram district, water from renovated ooranis came to their
rescue. Vivekananda Kendra, a NGO working in Ramanathapuram district
, convinced villagers in Mudulkulattur block to participate in reviving
ooranis and harvest rainwater using rooftops. Ooranis, the only source
of water had been neglected and fallen into disuse. Storage capacities
were greatly reduced due to siltation and encroachment. Absence of
proper inlet structure, poor maintenance of the side embankments and
contamination led to the decline of ponds.
To augment drinking water supply, Vivekanand Kendra decided to
provide ooranis with recharge tubewells. The kendra carried out
detailed studies in consultation with the Central Ground Water Board
(CGWB) selected Selvanayagapuram and Merukukottakudi villges in
Mudukulattur panchayat for installing these recharge structures.
The sub soil water level and brackish groundwater does not allow
any appreciable deepening of the oorani bed, while the high rate
of evaporation in summer months necessitates deepening rather than
increasing the surface area. The average length and width of the
pond was 83m and 70m, while its depth was 1.30m. Two recharge tubewells
of 200 mm diameter and 36.37 m depth were constructed inside the
pond. Gravel was packed in pits with 1.2m diameter and two metres
depth around the tubewells to facilitate rainwater collected in
the pond to recharge the sand layer occurring below five metres.
In addition, a draw well of 1.80 m diameter and 7.90 m depth was
constructed using concrete rings to collect water for drinking.
The pond was full by September 1997 and inflow into the tubewells
could be perceived by the lowering of the water level in the pond.
Pix P-163 Fig 1 MWEB