My friend Colonel. Roshan Sharma after a distinguished career in the Army took up a challenging assignment as the Adminstrator of a leading ultra modern hospital. In addition he also got passionately involved in various CSR activities. As a guest writer he shares his thoughts & own experience on one such successful initiative – ‘Rainwater harvesting’. The need to spread awareness on water conservation has become a matter of supreme importance these days.  And now its over to Roshan –

Hi folks,

I wish to  share my concerns on the important need for water management in the context of ‘rain water harvesting’.  According to a World Bank report the water situation in the country will become critical in less than two decades. Ground water levels are depleting &  sources are drying up at an alarming rate. There is therefore an urgent need to replenish this precious natural resource by traditional as well as innovative means and to avoid its indiscriminate use.

Smart water harvesting

Rain water harvesting implies accumulating and storing of rainwater for reuse before it reaches the underground water bearing layer of permeable rock known as aquifer. Nature gives us abundant water to meet our needs & requirements. When we lived, well spaced out in open country side; for our water requirements, we just dug a well or a bore well and for irrigation we depended on ponds & lakes.

For our convenience & comfort we started living in concentrated pockets in towns & cities. This entailed an extra responsibility on us i.e. catering for large quantities of water needed by this concentrated population; but we failed. Our greed for land; blinded us to even ignore our basic need for water.

Rainwater run off goes to aquifer

We went on a spree to land fill all ponds & low lying areas. These ponds & low lying areas are in fact valuable sources to replenish the underground water reservoirs known as aquifers. We need to correct this folly of ours.

Rainwater harvesting at a hospital

Rain water harvesting  when simply put means-collecting the surface rain water & feed it to the aquifer. One of the top rated hospitals in Pune, took the lead to do just that & benefited from it. With so much construction of buildings, a large amount of surface water falls on roof tops & the balance on open spaces.

During the year 2007-08 there was an acute shortage of water supply in our city.

To add to this problem; other sources to augment water supply to the hospital i.e. bore wells & an old well in the area; had dried up. The hospital had to buy water from private sources using water tankers. A total of Rs 4 lakh were spent during the year to buy water, app 900 tankers. During Mar 2008, the hospital spent Rs 1.5 lakh for ‘rain water harvesting’. The existing rooftop rain water drainage system was connected to a new set of pipes to enable the rain water to flow into the dry bore well shafts.

There was another problem. The construction surrounding the hospital area is such that natural drainage was blocked. Thus water after any rain used to get accumulated. These low lying areas were identified. Soakage pits were constructed at these sites to help percolation of rain water into the ground. This also solved the problem of flooding. Thus ‘rain water harvesting’ helped to raise the level of ground water in the aquifer. The previously dry, bore wells & the old well in the area got recharged.  Ever since, for the last four years the hospital gets enough water from aquifer to meet its requirement. The hospital’s dependence on our town’s official water supply system reduced considerably. This saved water is now available for other consumers in the area. Thus the hospital is not only helping itself but fulfilling a social responsibility, as well.

These figures show the savings accrued to the hospital for the last four years:-

Year No of Tankers Used Cost app(Rs) Savings compared to 4L(Rs)
2008-09 101 60,600 3,39,400
2009-10 48 28,800 3,71,200
2010-11 50 30,000 3,70,000
2011-12 46 27,600 3,72,400

Note:-Rate per tanker varies. For convenience Rs 600/per tanker has been taken.

Concluding with a quote “When the well is dry, we know the worth of water” ~ Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790). Remember water is the most precious gift given to us by nature and is limited. Please do view this inspirational video on water management in desert with wisdom and wit, Anupam Mishra talks about the amazing feats of engineering built centuries ago by the people of India’s Golden Desert to harvest water. These structures are still used today — and are often superior to modern water megaprojects –

Thanks Dilip and all of my friends for this opportunity to share my thoughts with you.


About Dilip

An open mind! Love to share my thoughts and a keenness to learn. An engineer and a MBA I had a wonderful innings in the Army and later moved to consultancy and teaching. My current interests are music and growing culinary herbs. Love to play golf and do yoga regularly. I am serious on "Living life less seriously". A warm welcome to you be well and be cheerful always.

13 responses

  1. […] Water Harvesting Share this:Like this:Like14 bloggers like this. This entry was posted in Crazy 4 line poems and tagged 2012, 4 lines, 4 lines poem, 4 lines poem on 5 elements- fire water earth wind sky, 4 lines poem on water, all in a days work, antarctic ice sheet, art, blog, climate, craziness, crazy 4 lines on water, crazy 4 lines poem, Democracy, education, environment, human-rights, India, inspiration, life, life and water, life is like that, love, miscellaneous, nature, opinion, other, outdoors, pancha bootham, pancha boothangal, photos, poem, poetry, random, science for kids, society, Tamilnadu, thoughts, water, water cycle poem, water percentage, world, world water day. Bookmark the permalink. ← Crazy 4 lines Poem #16 (2. Air) […]


  2. Asifa Zunaidha says:

    Nice post!! I appreciate your friend’s activity and awareness creation on Rainwater Harvesting.. I shall remember and implement it when I get chance 🙂


  3. Binky says:

    Sometimes a little forethought in planning can go a long ways.


  4. Very informative post, thank you for the time. It is amazing what just one building can do for the ground water. The world needs to know.


  5. girish says:

    Respected sir,

    Thank you for a nice article by col sahib for water conservation and though three fourth of the earth is covered by water but there is also a scarcity of water which we needs to conserve for our and our future generation use.

    Thank you for your blog


    Yours faithfully,

    Girish Kohli


    • dilipnaidu says:

      Girish ji thank you for both your comments. Feel good to read your wishes to Gautam and compliments to the Colonel Saab.

      Thank you dear friend remember news from you always makes me happy. 🙂


  6. Sachin Macwan says:

    Dear Brig. Naidu. I love to see your endorsement about amazing topics all the time. I think that’s why person like me can not control visiting your blogs after particular interval.
    I am inspired by the writing of Col. Roshan Sharma who focused on importance of “Rainwater Harvesting”. As Col. Sab mentioned the World Bank alarming report about water, “Ground water levels are depleting & sources are drying up at an alarming rate……” It shows how much we need to be careful about it!

    I firmly believe that Water is God’s gift. Whatever amount of water we are enjoying is because our ancestors conserved water. Would we have enough water today, if they had not been considerate? No, right!

    I would like to start with my state. Gujarat has taken numerous initiatives for conservation and rainwater harvesting plus management. Gujarat State Watershed Management Agency (GSWMA) is the nodal agency to implement Integrated Watershed Management Programme (IWMP) across Gujarat state.

    Over 5.5 lakh water management structures like Construction of Check Dams, Khet Talavadis (farm ponds), Boribunds (obstructing the flow of water by putting cement filled bags) have been built in the state. Besides this, 4.5 lakh hectares of land covered under micro-irrigation schemes have resulted in the highest decadal agricultural growth rate of 10.97 per cent in the period 2000-01 to 2009-10.

    Sujalam Sufalam project: Under this project 7 districts of Gujarat will be able to solve the problem of pure drinking water. The canal will provide conserved water to the needy regions of Gujarat.

    We discuss this important issue of rain water harvesting but forget some basic steps to follow to save the water, we need to:

     Always check all taps of your home before going to the bed.
     Do not sprinkle water to keep surface of home, office or terrace cool.
     Do not keep tap open while washing clothes or vegetables.

    In a nutshell, we need to member the statement of the founding father of America (Benjamin Franklin)”When the well is dry, we know the worth of water”.

    The Earth Supporter – Sachin 🙂


    • dilipnaidu says:

      Dear Sachin a very well written response on a topic that has global implications. And the Gujarat example is highly inspiring. Thank you my friend & best of luck.


  7. Insightful post!

    Water harvesting is so very important nowadays, especially in the places where there is less of water. Otherwise also, there are so many ways we can save water and use it when it’s really required.

    Thanks for sharing. 🙂


    • dilipnaidu says:

      Hi Harleena,

      Welcome & many thanks for the visit. I am glad you endorse the need to conserve water and to use it economically.

      A quote by Maurice Strong says ~ “We owe at least this much to future generations, from whom we have borrowed a fragile planet called Earth”.

      Cheers 🙂


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