Community effort restores an Urban Waterbody

02/01/2010 20:11

An extraordinary effort of ordinary people

They happened to witness the shaping up of an apparently impossible effort into a success. The effort was of retaining the significance of the very name of a road by giving life to the only existing Jhil of Jhil Road. Jheel means large waterbodies. Once with so many jhil(s) on both of its sides the Jhil Road which runs parallel to the railway lines from Dhakuria to Jadavpur, was awaiting the same fate for its last surviving Jhil as it happened to the others : gradual filling up followed by construction of highrises. Two bighas of the eight-bigha Jhil have already been reclaimed to make room for stock of bamboo poles, Saw mills, rubbish from nearest Pal Bazar and for extension of the local Jelepara.

It all started on March,29,’99 with a group of local 40+ young enthusiasts who came forward to form a Jhil Sanrakshan Committee with the plan of making the dying Jhil free from Kachuripana and pumping the unusable, rotten water out of it. The local people with the neighbouring club members and school students took out processions and organised several meetings to conserve the Jhil. They have achieved the cooperation of the local municipal authorities not only to resurrect the Jhil but also to rehabilitate the 13 affected families. The work for fencing the sides of the Jhil has started.

It all ended within 2 months with the Jhil not only having a now look but also with a chance of a fresh breath for the locality and an even fresher perception of life through unity, motivation and determination for peoples’ own environment. This isan important example of successful positive movement, which is seldom experienced. Vasundhara who were very much active in the movement has developed a very interesting document on slides along with a small Bengali publication. ( See more )

Be environmentally responsible – save water bodies of your locality.