Water Body Revival in Dwarka

LG orders immediate revival of water bodies of Dwarka before monsoon arrives; to desilt the WBs and link them with storm water drains.

A group of local residents belonging to Sec-22, 23, Dwarka and Pochanpur village met the Lt. Governor, Tejender Khanna on 7th June, 2013, to demand work on water bodies before the monsoons arrive and to draw a comprehensive plan of action for restoration of all water bodies. A power point presentation was shown to the LG on the efforts of the residents to restore the water body in Dist. Park, Sec-23, Dwarka and our analysis was presented on how the rejuvenation of these WBs can solve the water woes of Dwarka. The residents claimed on the basis of a conservative analysis by water experts like Prof. Soni and Dr. Shashank Shekhar that 2 MGD of water can be additionally generated for Dwarka by reviving its water bodies.

The meeting was successful as the LG on seeing the presentation immediately called on phone Mr. S R Solanki and ordered him to start the work as desired by residents. He also immediately announced formation of a committee for rejuvenating Dwarka’s water bodies. Mr. S R Solanki shall convene the meetings of the committee every Friday and discuss the progress made and take necessary steps on recommendation of the committee. The report of work and minutes of the committee meeting shall be sent to the LG and the members every week. The members of the committee shall consist of Mr. SR Solanki, Diwan Singh, Capt SS Mann, and Dr. Shashank Shekhar and other concerned citizens be incorporated who are working for the cause. This committee shall meet the Lt. Governor once every month.

The LG ordered immediate work on:
linking the storm water drains to the water bodies, Cleaning of storm water drains,  Desilting of ponds,  Preservation of area around the water body as woodlands (forest).

The woodland would be treated as a part of water body and kept segregated from other uses by a suitably boundry of wire mesh or any other suitable means. No park or any other invasive landuse shall be permitted on the woodland. All the water bodies receiving sewage shall be subjected to treatments like bio-remediation.

In a time frame of one month all water bodies and other depressions, whether in records or not, shall be identified and worked upon for restoration as water bodies. The matter has been directed for Add’l Commissioner, Landscape, Ms. Savita Bhandari to complete the task.

Once the identification of all water bodies is completed, and the above jobs are in progress, the LG has promised to visit on ground, in near future.
At the end of meeting, we submitted a letter from residents of Sec-22, 23 Dwarka, containing signatures of 419 people, demanding revival of the water bodies. The LG cordially accepted the letter and after going through the letter said that the demands have already been met.

Following issues were discussed:
Playfields: All big size parks shall have areas segregated for play fields for youth. Play field in Sec-22 shall be completed in time bound manner. The work is in progress for almost a year and shall be completed at a faster pace and completed soon.
Concretization of footpaths inside parks: It was decided to stop any further concretization and remove all such concrete footpath wheresoever possible.
Native species of trees that can survive in Delhi’s semi arid environment to be identified and foreign species be avoided. Capt. Mann informed about an example in Sec-22, Dwarka about how the sheesham trees are dying due to termite invasion, which is happening due to lowering water table . However, the sheesham tree that was receiving regular water from a leaked pipeline stayed healthy and free of termites. This observation caught the imagination of the LG and ordered for identification of local species that are drought resistant and their plantation in replacement of all the trees dying down.
Revival of old age home in Sec-8, Dwarka: Captain Mann raised this issue that a big building designated for old people is lying waste. After a lot of correspondence by Sukh Dukh ke Saathi, a forum of senior citizens in Sec-22, 23, Delhi Govt. replied that they should meet the Director concerned at IP Estate, New Delhi. LG promised to take up the issue to expediate the matter to make this building functional as Old Age Home.
Capt Mann thanked the LG for taking strong steps to protect the 2 acre park behind Sadbhavna Apts from encroachment by a private School.

The members present in the meeting were:
Diwan Singh, Capt Mann, member, Sukh Dukh ke Saathi,,Prof. Shashank Sekhar, Geology Dept. Delhi University., Ravinder Kumar, active volunteer from nearby colony, Maj. Bhola Ram Enclave, Rakesh Kumar, active volunteer from Pochanpur village