National Water Mission’s (NWM) campaign “Catch the Rain” with the tagline “Catch the rain, where it falls, when it falls” is to nudge the states and stakeholders to create appropriate Rain Water Harvesting Structures (RWHS) suitable to the climatic conditions and sub-soil strata before monsoon.
This Campaign drives to check dams, water harvesting pits, rooftop RWHS, etc. removal of encroachments and de-silting tanks to increase their storage capacity; removal of obstructions in the channels which bring water to them from the catchment areas; repairs step-wells and using defunct bore-wells and unused wells to put water back to aquifers, etc., are to be taken up with the active participation of people.
To facilitate these activities, States have been requested to open “Rain Centres” in each district— in Collectorates/Municipalities or GP offices. During this period, these Rain Centres will have a dedicated mobile phone number and will be manned by an engineer or a person well trained in RWHS. This centre acts as a technical guidance centre to all in the district as to how to catch the rain, as it falls, where it falls.
Monsoon in India:
India receives more than thrice the amount of rainfall than its average consumption- which means rainwater harvesting is a very effective method to save water, reducing the gap between demand and supply.
The average general population is not aware of the level of water scarcity in the country and in the particular region that they live in- and this information should be considered general knowledge.
Water security, just like food security should be an important goal- and it is not just the government’s responsibility citizen action is crucial.
Benefits of rainwater harvesting- in a decentralised manner.
Large scale using simple filtration methods, such as nets, to cover pipe openings and save the water falling on terrace tops into tanks overground/ underground- which may be boiled before use, for drinking or cooking, and used directly for all secondary purposes.
Putting out buckets and large utensils during rain in balconies/backyards which can further be used in the sameway as above.
Encouraging people to reuse and recycle water for different purposes, within the household, to lower overall consumption, such as—
Reuse leftover drinking water or ice- by collecting it separately and using it for cleaning table-tops, counters, etc.
Reusing the water used for washing vegetables, fruits or grains to water plants or for mopping the house, etc.
If the household uses RO- water discharged by the machine can be used for all secondary purposes such as cleaning the house, doing laundry, cleaning the car/any other vehicle.
Taking a bath using a bucket (instead of showers) to reduce wastage.
Reusing leftover bathwater- for water plants or for laundry purposes.
Reusing laundry water for flushing/washing toilets.