Give a missed call on 8000980009! Support The Rally For Rivers! A lot of us must’ve stumbled upon at least one of these two messages lately.
Rally for rivers is a breakthrough, nationwide awareness campaign, launched by the Isha Foundation addressing the depleting conditions of our rivers and saving these lifelines. The Month long rally started in Coimbatore on September 3rd, and will end on October 2nd in New Delhi, where Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev will present a draft policy to save our rivers to Our Prime minister of India. Neither a protest, nor an agitation, this is just a campaign to raise awareness that our rivers are depleting. “Everyone who consumes water must Rally For Rivers”, Sadhguru keeps it simple yet explicit.
“Ganga, Krishna, Narmada, Kaveri – many of our great rivers are depleting fast. If we do not act now, the legacy we hand over to the next generation will be one of conflict and deprivation. These rivers nurtured and nourished us for thousands of years. It is time we nurture and nourish them back to health”, says The Isha Foundation website.
Why Is It Started?
India has essentially grown along the banks of major rivers. Our ancient civilizations were born along the waters, and they perished when the rivers shifted course. For many millennia, we maintained the sanctity of this relationship. But in the last few decades, due to the pressures of population and development, our perennial rivers are becoming seasonal. Today we have 75% less water per person than in 1947.
India’s rivers are undergoing a drastic change. Due to the pressures of population and development, our perennial rivers are becoming seasonal. Many of the smaller rivers have already vanished. Flood as well as drought are becoming increasingly frequent as rivers turn unruly during the monsoon, and vanish once the rainy season is over.
Estimates say 65% of our water needs are met by rivers. 2 out of 3 major Indian cities already deal with daily water shortage. Many urban residents pay ten times the normal amount for a can of water. We consume water not just to drink or for domestic purposes. 80% of water is used to grow our food. Each person’s average water requirement is 1.1 million liters a year. Flood, drought and rivers turning seasonal are increasingly leading to crop failure across the country. Climate change is expected to cause worse floods and droughts within the next 25-50 years. During the monsoon, rivers will flood. The rest of the year, drought will follow. These trends are already beginning.
Many of the smaller rivers have already vanished. The Ganga and Indus are two of the world’s most endangered rivers, according to WWF. The Narmada, Krishna and Kaveri do not reach the sea four months of the year. Water levels in almost every major river have declined severely.
If we do not act now to reverse the serious decline of these lifelines, the next generation will pay a very heavy price. Isha Foundation is proposing a comprehensive river rejuvenation plan to reverse this decline and revive our rivers.
When is this Rally happening?
To create awareness and momentum amongst all sections of society and the government, Isha Foundation has organized a “Rally for Rivers” awareness campaign in consultation and collaboration with the Ministry of Environment. Conceived by Sadhguru, the rally was flagged off from Isha Yoga Center, Coimbatore on September 3rd and will culminate in Delhi on October 2nd, covering 13 states and 21 major cities.
Sadhguru, as the river campaigner is known as, has so far driven through nearly 15 states, signing pacts with state governments for providing sustainable modules for saving rivers and getting citizens to make a missed call on 8000980009 as proof of their support.
How Can We Save Our Rivers?
Rally For Rivers is an effort to:
- Make everyone aware about the crisis our rivers are facing
- Create awareness among all sections of society about the need to Rally for Rivers
- Garner public support and momentum for the government to implement a positive river policy”
Save The Blue For Another Green Revolution
With over a decade of experience in matters related to the environment and sustainability, Isha Foundation offers a core solution to stabilize and revitalize our rivers. It involves creating and maintaining tree cover for a minimum of one kilometer on either side of the entire river length and half a kilometer for tributaries. Native forest trees would be planted in government-owned land along riverbanks. Organic fruit tree cultivation would be taken up on private farmers’ lands.This solution ensures that rivers are restored while also enhancing farmers’ livelihood by more than doubling their income in five years. The availability of fruit also improves nutritional intake among people.Trees help keep rivers perennial, mitigate floods and drought, increase precipitation, mitigate climate change and prevent soil erosion.
What Would A Missed Call Do?
In a democratic system, the government is sensitive to the views of the majority of the population. Afterall, a fistful of salt changed the story of Bharat. A missed call can change destiny of its future generations. Unless there is substantial support and demand from the people, a positive river policy cannot be brought into action effectively. Almost every adult in the country has a cellphone today. Giving a missed call is a simple way to quantify public support. In other words, your missed call will act as a vote in support of reviving our rivers. The simplest way to participate in the campaign is by giving a missed call to 80009 80009. The missed calls will act as a vote to support the initiative. So give a missed call on 8000980009, if you haven’t yet.