THRISSUR: With a simple water harvesting technique in farmlands and residential plots, the damages caused by the deluge could have beeb considerably reduced, opines Varghese Tharakan, an organic farmer and winner of Shony Mitra award for soil and water conservation award.
“Now, doubts have surfaced that even after the historic flooding and for all the destruction it caused, we are not sure having enough water to drink and for farming in the summer,” he says.
“The 209-km-long Bharathapuzha, which flowed breaching its banks during the deluge last month, has now shrunk considerably and kids are playing football on the riverbed. With simple water harvesting techniques, we can bring down the calamity during deluge and recharge water tables.”
He had set up a model jackfruit farm at Kurumalkkunnu in Veloor Panchayat in Thrissur by digging shallow trenches across the hill slope for water conservation.
“I call the deluge a ‘second heart attack’ after 1924 floods. Starting from sewage and stormwater channels to the rivers like Bharathapuzha, there are several blockades in one form or other causing water-logging and floods,” he says.
“We need to make all the 44 rivers in the state to spread and flow by covering entire river beds and floodplains to mitigate the disasters during future floods. The thickets which have developed on the river beds need to be cleared for the river to spread its water flow. The riverbeds where now the water flows in a small stream need to be levelled up, and small check dams built to conserve water during monsoon and floods.”...