Tuesday, 8 August 2017

My journey to Sikkim for building water security through Rainwater Harvesting

My journey to Sikkim for building water security through Rainwater Harvesting - a collaborative effort of  KSCST, Govt. of Sikkim and UNDP

Place name is Suldung, Upper Kamling, at an altitude of 2560 meters, closest town Jorethang, West Sikkim. August 2nd marked a day to introduce rainwater harvesting in the region and build skills among the local youth.

Sharing the experience of rainwater harvesting and building water security among the most HUMBLE LOCAL COMMUNITY, was a truly joyous experience.
West Sikkim is a district of the Indian state of Sikkim. The economy is mainly agrarian, despite most of the land being unfit for cultivation owing to the precipitous and rocky slopes. The region has many power projects and enjoys almost uninterrupted electricity. Roads are in poor condition owing to the frequent landslides. West Sikkim houses a great diversity of flora and fauna, many of which are used by Indigenous and local communities. Most of the district is hilly, it enjoys a temperate climate. Above 3,800 m (12,000 ft) the slopes are full of rhododendron forests.
The story of 'Suldung'  - The region has an annual rainfall of around 2000mm and the roaring river Rangeet (tributary of Teesta) flows ferociously in the valley. Several kilometres uphill, villages with scattered houses are dependent on springs and streams for daily water needs. Steep slope drain off rainwater quickly and water reaches the bottom of the hill to join the river Rangeet. Villagers (mostly woman) trek few kilometres to collect water and carry water on their back climbing the steep slippery winding walk paths through thick woods. 

My mobile camera could capture waterfalls and the flowing river, but are not of reach by villagers (mirage). Few rich among them hire daily labour to haul water. It is common for grownup boys to leave the village and move down hill to towns because of water scarcity. Tourist across the country and even from outside India reach here for adventure water rafting in Teesta, just few kilometres uphill, people decamp their villages because of non availability of WATER. 

'Harvest Rainwater and a Host of benefits'

Thank you KSCST, DST, Govt of Sikkim -Dorjee Thinlay Bhutia, Suman Thapa, 
UNDP - Surajit Baruah, Rowena Mathew, Sanjeeb Pradan and more so for the PEOPLE of Suldung.

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Mr Shivakumar has several publications and significant number of patents, which are under commercial exploitation to benefit the society. His research experience spans over several fields and areas in applied sciences. He has a "National Award" to his credit, awarded by the Union Government of India in the year 2001 for one of his innovations. He was awarded the "Citizen Extraordinary" by Rotary International in the year 2007. The First Innovation award "Ammulya 2012" for two of his patents was awarded by Government of Karnataka in addition to other state awards and recognitions.