Threat to hopes


The Bhopal front
Continuing wisdom
Urban efforts

Inernational Commission on
Irrigation and Drainage (ICID)



Turning a crisis into an opportunity



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Vol. 3                                       No. 3                                    June 2001


Urban attempts

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Anil Agarwal addressing the workshop for architects and engineeris on May1

Centre for Science and Environment, (CSE), a New Delhi based non-governmental organisation as a part of its people’s management of water programme, has been organising a series of workshops and giving technical assistance to people for implementing urban rainwater harvesting. These workshops are aimed at creating awareness and disseminating the technical know-how on rainwater harvesting amongst the government bodies and stakeholders. From March onwards, the technical support activities were carried out on a mission basis. Over 30 projects from which rainwater harvesting systems were designed were accomplished in past 4 months. (See Table 1)

S.No Client Area/project cost Details of design
1.PRIA New Delhi Tughlakabad Institutional Area Area- 1, 000 sq m Cost –Rs 0.31 lakh One recharge well
two percolation pits.
2. Jamia Hamdard University Tughlakabad New Delhi Area – 3, 93, 700 sq m
cost – Rs 2.24 lakh
Seven recharge wells.
3. Vikram export Greater Kailash II New Delhi Area – 1, 000 sq m
Cost – Rs 0.31 lakh
Three recharge wells.
4. Press Enclave
Saket New Delhi – 110017
Area – 61, 710 sq m Cost – Rs 1.62 lakh Four recharge wells 20 shallow percolation pits
5. Qutab View Apartments Roof  Mehrauli
New Delhi
Area –700 sq m Cost – Rs 0.19 lakh One recharge well
6. Proposed School  Bahirat Road Pune Area-1,000 sq m Cost – Rs 0.22 lakh One recharge well trough cum recharge well one filtering tank
7. Moni Sarkar residence G  1286 Ist floor Chittranjan park New Delhi – 19 Area –1,000 sq m cost – Rs 0.14 lakhs One recharge well and  one filtering tank.
8.   Delhi Public School NOIDA (hostel building only) Area – 446 sq m Cost – Rs 0.51 lakhs Two recharge wells and one filtering tank.
9.   Salwan Public School Roof  Old Rajendra Nagar Pusa road Area–2, 663 sq m Cost – Rs 0.97 lakh three   Three recharge wells s percolation pits and one filtering tank
10. Panchshila park New Delhi Roof area–1, 256 sq m Cost – Rs 0.49 lakhs Two recharge wellsone percolation pit.
11. Panchshila Montessori School Roof area – 432 sq m
Cost –Rs 0.24 lakhs
One recharge well.
12.   Panchshila Public School  Area – 354 sq mCost – Rs 0.23 lakhs One recharge well
13.   Janaki Devi Mahavidhyalay Purvi Marg  Rajendra Nagar New Delhi Area – 2664 sq m Cost – Rs 0.88 lakhs Three recharge well one trough cum recharge bore.
14.   Hero Honda India Ltd Dharuhera plant Rewari Area – 38, 910 sq m
Cost – Rs 4.01 lakhs
Seven recharge wells.
15.   Paharpur business centre 21, Nehru Place New Delhi – 19 Area –700 sq m
Cost – Rs 0.22 lakhs
One recharge well and  diversion of surface water into existing well
16. Hero Honda – India Ltd Gurgaon plant Haryana  Area – 30924 sq m
Cost – Rs 3.55 lakhs
Six recharge well and diversion of water to abandoned open well.
17. Ford Foundation 55 Lodi Estate New Delhi- 110003 Area 12,500 sq m  Cost - Rs1.33 lakhs Three recharge wells four recharge troughs and two percolation pits.
18. BPCL Housing Complex Noida Area 13, 700 sq m Cost - Rs 1.35 lakhs Two recharge wells one pond, one recharge troughs and eight percolation pits.
19. Charu Bharatia Farm House Chattarpur New Delhi Area 13,400 sq m
Cost - For recharge structures Rs 1.53 lakh For storm drain Rs 1.50 lakh
Two recharge wells one recharge troughs eight percolation pits and two  umbrella structures in the pond and a network of drains
20. Modi Care Farm House Chattarpur New Delhi Area 36, 100 sq m  Cost - For recharge structures
Rs 0.81 lakh For storm drain Rs 0.40 lakh
Two recharge wells  two recharge troughs and four percolation pits.
21. British School  San Martin Marg New Delhi Area 25, 000 sq m Cost Rs 0.97 lakh Two recharge wellsone recharge trough one recharge trench and four ercolation pits.
22. CRPF School Rohini New Delhi Area 36100 sq m  Cost Rs 1.20 lakh Four recharge wells and four percolation pits
23. Garden Estate  Gurgaon Haryana Area 90000 sq mCost Rs 0.72 lakh Two recharge well and13 recharge structures
24. Anupam Dev  Westend colony New Delhi Area 230 Sq. m Cost Rs 0.30 lakh Two recharge wells
25.  Alka Sheel  A-12/6 Vasant Vihar New Delhi Area 450 Sq. m Cost Rs 0.29 lakh Two recharge wells
26. Renuka Mishra D-6  Vasant Vihar New Delhi Area 320 Sq. m Cost Rs 0.14 lakh One recharge well
27. A S Sen Vasant Vihar Poorvi Marg Area New Delhi 41720 Sq. m Cost Rs 0.27 lakh One recharge well and one recharge trough.
28. Yogesh Narain  Vasant Vihar New Delhi Area: 900 Sq.m Cost: Rs 0.27 lakh One recharge well and one recharge trough.
29. Brig Jagdev Singh Vasant Vihar New Delhi Area 567 Sq. m Cost Rs 0.18 lakh One   recharge well and one percolation pit
30. Shanti Niketan Club Vasant Vihar New Delhi Area 2,040 sq m Cost Rs 0.37 lakh Two recharge wells
31. Vasant Vihar Club Vasant Vihar New Delhi Area 5, 600 sq m Cost Rs 0.55 lakh two One recharge well recharge troughs

The first workshop this year was organised on May 1, 2001 for the architects and engineers in Delhi. Apart from practicing architects from National Capital Region (NCR), representatives from Delhi Development Authority (DDA), Noida Authority, Haryana State Industrial Development Corporation, Central Public Works Department (CPWD), RITES, Housing and Urban Development Corporation (HUDCO), National Security Guard, National Building Construction corporation limited (NBCC), Building Materials and technology promotion council (BMTPC) attended the workshop.

Various aspects of rainwater harvesting ranging from principles to implementation and the need for integrating water harvesting with landscape design were discussed. The resource persons included R Jeyakumar, Managing Director, Rajparis Civil Construction Limited, Chennai; S Viswanath, Rainwater Club, Bangalore; Akshay Kaul, landscape architect, Vashra, New Delhi and the engineers of CSE. Anil Agarwal, chairperson, CSE, who gave the keynote address, spoke on the water crisis and the relevance of rainwater harvesting in today’s context.

The workshop ended with a discussion "where do we go from here?" A very lively participation in this discussion, from all the participants, was the highlight of this workshop. Many suggestions came out regarding how to make this campaign of making water everybody’s business, a success. Most of the participants were of the opinion that a strict legislation along with tax incentives would be a catalyst in propagating the concept of rainwater harvesting. Various participants stressed the necessity of identifying good contractors for executing the works as well as training and making more people involved in rainwater harvesting.

The second workshop organised in NOIDA was the outcome of the first workshop. The Deputy General Manager (DGM) of horticulture division, NOIDA Authority, who had attended the workshop organised by CSE on May 1, was highly inspired and decided to spread the message of rainwater harvesting. This led to the workshop on June 15, 2001 jointly organised by CSE and the NOIDA authority. People from all walks of life like government officials, engineers, architects, members of resident welfare associations, (RWAs), participated in this workshop. The CSE engineers addressing the workshop talked on the importance of rainwater harvesting and the principles and techniques involved with inputs on design and costing. Few case studies were also discussed. They answered various queries regarding the quality of rainwater, financial implications and the reuse of kitchen sullage for recharging. Seeing the overwhelming response CSE and NOIDA authority is planning to organise more workshops for awareness generation.

As an effort to reach out to the resident community, CSE organised a workshop for the residents welfare associations (RWAs) in Delhi, on June 17, 2001. Representatives of the apex association of DDA colonies and 20 RWAs attended the meeting. The resource persons from CSE talked on the various aspects of rainwater harvesting. The principles, techniques, design of rainwater harvesting systems as well as costing was discussed. During the discussion session, most of the participants talked on the need for proper coordination between the government bodies, RWAs and the CSE for making rainwater harvesting popular. The participants from various RWAs criticised the attitude of the various government agencies in not taking interest in participating in the rainwater harvesting efforts of the community. They were unanimous in demanding financial assistance from the government to promote water harvesting on a larger scale. The workshop ended with the request from the participants to CSE to act as a pressure group in involving various government agencies to make water harvesting a mass movement.

As a part of propagating the concept of rainwater harvesting amongst the people, CSE as the central secretariat of the National Water Harvesters’ Network is helping out various governmental and non-governmental bodies in organising awareness generation workshops.

As part of this activity, technical support was rendered by CSE engineers in the workshops organised in Indore, Gwalior and Rewa, Jaipur as a support to the Rajiv Gandhi Drinking Water Mission, (RGDWM). The main objective of the workshop was to create awareness about rainwater harvesting among public and to form a database of technical people and people interested in rainwater harvesting. The engineers of CSE took part in the workshops in Indore on April 27, 2001, at Gwalior on April 29, 2001 and at Rewa on May 3, 2001. People from various walk of like politicians, government officials, engineers, architects and other citizens having interest in water management attended this workshop. All the speakers discussed the importance and need for water harvesting. The engineers of CSE stressed the relevance of rooftop water harvesting and discussed the techniques involved and the design of rooftop water harvesting schemes. Various case studies from Delhi were also discussed.

A similar workshop to generate awareness among the residents regarding the importance of rainwater harvesting as well as to provide a platform for interaction with the experts in this field was organised by the water management committee of the Vasant Vihar Welfare Association on May 5, 2001. CSE and Central Ground Water Board (CGWB) were invited for the meeting as resource persons.

Around 50 residents of Vasant Vihar attended the meeting. The officers from CGWB explained the various methods available for artificial recharge. This was followed by a talk by CSE staffer who spoke on the various approaches to harvest rainwater like storage, recharge and combination of both. The issue of rainwater quality and the steps required for ensuring quality as well as few case studies were also discussed. A number of individuals requested CSE to provide consultancy services for water harvesting.

CSE was requested to give a presentation on rainwater harvesting at the Western Air Command, Indian Air Force on June 1, 2001. Engineers of CSE talked on the urban water crisis and its causes. The concept of rainwater harvesting and its potential, design aspects, practices from different parts of India and abroad were also discussed. Air Marshal Krishna Swami, who was very much impressed by the case study of Frankfurt airport from Germany where rainwater harvesting had been implemented, asked whether it could be replicated in the Indian scenario. He requested CSE to submit a letter quoting the charges for making proposal for rainwater harvesting at the Subroto Park complex and Air Force station, Narela.

On June 5, 2001, the world environment day, the engineer of CSE gave a presentation on rainwater harvesting at Katha Kazana. This was as a part of the training programme organised by an NGO, Katha, for the teachers working in the slums. Slide show as well as a visit to CSE office to see the water harvesting structures was arranged.

The rural development think tank of Surya Foundation invited CSE to make a presentation on water harvesting on June 16, 2001. Resource persons from CSE explained the current scenario from various states reeling under severe drought. They also discussed various methods available for water conservation in the rural and urban context as well as the possibility of legislation to make rainwater harvesting a mass movement. The other speakers included Mohan Kanda, Additional secretary, Ministry of Rural Development and Rangachari, former member, Central Water Power Commission.

For further information on rainwater harvesting and for technical advice, please contact:

R K Srinivasan and Suresh Babu S V
Natural resource Management
Centre for Science and Environment
41, Tughlakabad Institutional Area
New Delhi- 110062
Tel: 91-11-6081110, 6081124 ext-267
Fax: 91-11-6085879
E-mail: , svsuresh


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