New Delhi: Water conservation is a way to render service to the nation, said Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday and urged citizens to focus on rainwater harvesting amid ongoing monsoon.
"The monsoons have come. Let us once again focus on water conservation. When the cloud rain they just don't rain for us, they also rain for our future generation. The rainwater gets collected on the ground, it increases the groundwater level, and that is why I believe water conservation is a way of service to the nation," said PM Modi while addressing the "Mann Ki Baat" radio programme.
PM Modi said there are lots of people around us who do the good deed of water conservation as their duty and talked about Satchidananda Bharati from Uttarakhand's Pauri Garhwa.
"Bharti ji is a teacher and he has imparted a very good education to the people through his deeds. Today, due to his hard work, the huge water crisis in the Ufrainkhal area of Pauri Garhwal has come to an end. Where people used to face water scarcity, today there is a continuous supply of water throughout the year," PM Modi informed.
He stated that Bharati used Chalkhal, a traditional method of water conservation in hills, which involves digging a big pit to collect water.
"Bharti ji also added some new methods to this tradition. He regularly got small and big ponds dug. Due to this, not only the hills of Ufrainkhal turned green, but the problem of drinking water of the people was also solved. You will be surprised to know that Bharti ji has got more than 30 thousand such water tanks constructed. 30 thousand! This monumental work of his continues even today and is inspiring many people," noted the PM.
He also talked about people of Andhav village in the Banda district of UP who also made an innovative effort for water conversation and have given a very interesting name to their campaign - 'Khet ka pani khet mein, gaon ka pani gaon mein'.
"Under this campaign, high bunds have been raised in several hundred bighas of fields of the village. As result rainwater started collecting in the field and started percolating into the ground. Now, these people are also planning to plant trees on the bunds of the fields. That is, now farmers will get all three - water, trees and money! As it is the village is getting recognized far and wide due to its good work," the Prime Minister said.
He added that by taking inspiration from all of these efforts, we can also conserve water around us and in whatever way possible we should save it.
The Prime Minister further recited a shloka and said there is no such plant on earth that does not have any medicinal properties! "There are many such trees and plants around us, which have amazing properties, but many times we do not even know about them!" PM Modi narrated the story of Paritosh from Nainital who wrote a letter on the same subject. "He has written that he came to know about miraculous medicinal properties of Giloy and many other plants only after the outbreak of Corona! Paritosh has also urged me to tell all the listeners of Mann Ki Baat that we should know about the flora around us, and also convey to others. In fact, this is our centuries-old heritage, which we have to preserve,' PM said.
He informed Ramlotan Kushwaha from Satna of Madhya Pradesh is working in this direction and built a museum of indigenous plants on his farm.
"In this museum, he has collected hundreds of medicinal plants and seeds. And he has brought them here from far-flung regions. Apart from this, he also grows many types of Indian vegetables every year. People visit this garden, this museum of Ramlotan ji, and learn a lot from it. Indeed, this is a very good experiment which can be replicated in different regions of the country," he added.
He also urged the people who can make such an effort, should attempt something like Kushwaha did, as it can also open up new sources of income for them.