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Paani Foundation

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Paani Foundation
Founded2016
FoundersAamir Khan and Kiran Rao
FocusDrought and the water-crisis
Area served
India
Websitewww.paanifoundation.in

Paani Foundation is a non-profit, non-governmental organization which is active in the area of drought prevention and watershed management in the state of Maharashtra, India. The organization was founded by Indian actor Aamir Khan and his ex-wife , Kiran Rao. The CEO of the Foundation is Satyajit Bhatkal.

The primary aim of Paani Foundation is to spread knowledge of watershed management and groundwater replenishment. Paani Foundation has been organizing the Satyamev Jayate Water Cup competition since 2016, where villages compete with each other to implement watershed management and water conservation methods in the summer months leading up to the monsoon season.[1][2] Paani foundation carries steps to overcome the ill effects of droughts.

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Nonprofit organization

Nonprofit organization

A nonprofit organization (NPO) or non-profit organisation, also known as a non-business entity, not-for-profit organization, or nonprofit institution, is a legal entity organized and operated for a collective, public or social benefit, in contrast with an entity that operates as a business aiming to generate a profit for its owners. A nonprofit is subject to the non-distribution constraint: any revenues that exceed expenses must be committed to the organization's purpose, not taken by private parties. An array of organizations are nonprofit, including some political organizations, schools, business associations, churches, social clubs, and consumer cooperatives. Nonprofit entities may seek approval from governments to be tax-exempt, and some may also qualify to receive tax-deductible contributions, but an entity may incorporate as a nonprofit entity without securing tax-exempt status.

Non-governmental organization

Non-governmental organization

A non-governmental organization (NGO) or non-governmental organisation is an organization that generally is formed independent from government. They are typically nonprofit entities, and many of them are active in humanitarianism or the social sciences; they can also include clubs and associations that provide services to their members and others. Surveys indicate that NGOs have a high degree of public trust, which can make them a useful proxy for the concerns of society and stakeholders. However, NGOs can also be lobby groups for corporations, such as the World Economic Forum. NGOs are distinguished from international and intergovernmental organizations (IOs) in that the latter are more directly involved with sovereign states and their governments.

Drought

Drought

A drought is defined as drier than normal conditions. This means that a drought is "a moisture deficit relative to the average water availability at a given location and season". A drought can last for days, months or years. Drought often exerts substantial impacts on the ecosystems and agriculture of affected regions, and causes harm to the local economy. Annual dry seasons in the tropics significantly increase the chances of a drought developing and subsequent wildfires. Periods of heat can significantly worsen drought conditions by hastening evaporation of water vapour.

Watershed management

Watershed management

Watershed management is the study of the relevant characteristics of a watershed aimed at the sustainable distribution of its resources and the process of creating and implementing plans, programs and projects to sustain and enhance watershed functions that affect the plant, animal, and human communities within the watershed boundary. Features of a watershed that agencies seek to manage to include water supply, water quality, drainage, stormwater runoff, water rights and the overall planning and utilization of watersheds. Landowners, land use agencies, stormwater management experts, environmental specialists, water use surveyors and communities all play an integral part in watershed management.

Maharashtra

Maharashtra

Maharashtra is a state in the western peninsular region of India occupying a substantial portion of the Deccan Plateau. Maharashtra is the second-most populous state in India and the second-most populous country subdivision globally. It was formed on 1 May 1960 by splitting the bilingual Bombay State, which had existed since 1956, into majority Marathi-speaking Maharashtra and Gujarati-speaking Gujarat. Maharashtra is home to the Marathi people, the predominant ethno-linguistic group, who speak the Marathi language, the official language of the state. The state is divided into 6 divisions and 36 districts, with the state capital being Mumbai, the most populous urban area in India, and Nagpur serving as the winter capital, which also hosts the winter session of the state legislature. Godavari and Krishna are the two major rivers in the state. Forests cover 16.47 per cent of the state's geographical area. Out of the total cultivable land in the state, about 60 per cent is used for grain crops in the Deccan region, rice in coastal Konkan, and other high rainfall areas.

India

India

India, officially the Republic of India, is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by area, the second-most populous country, and the most populous democracy in the world. Bounded by the Indian Ocean on the south, the Arabian Sea on the southwest, and the Bay of Bengal on the southeast, it shares land borders with Pakistan to the west; China, Nepal, and Bhutan to the north; and Bangladesh and Myanmar to the east. In the Indian Ocean, India is in the vicinity of Sri Lanka and the Maldives; its Andaman and Nicobar Islands share a maritime border with Thailand, Myanmar, and Indonesia. The nation's capital city is New Delhi.

Aamir Khan

Aamir Khan

Mohammed Aamir Hussain Khan is an Indian actor, film director and producer who works in Hindi films. Through his career spanning over 30 years, Khan has established himself as one of the most notable actors of Indian cinema. Khan is the recipient of numerous awards, including nine Filmfare Awards, four National Film Awards, and an AACTA Award, with one of his film productions also receiving an Academy Award nomination. He was honoured by the Government of India with the Padma Shri in 2003 and the Padma Bhushan in 2010, and received an honorary title from the Government of China in 2017.

Kiran Rao

Kiran Rao

Kiran Rao is an Indian film producer, screenwriter, director and singer who works in Hindi cinema. In 2016, Rao co-founded Paani Foundation, a non-profit organisation working towards the mission of fighting drought in Maharashtra.

Satyajit Bhatkal

Satyajit Bhatkal

Satyajit Bhatkal is an Indian television and film director, best known as director of Satyamev Jayate, a TV show focused on addressing social issues in India.

Monsoon

Monsoon

A monsoon is traditionally a seasonal reversing wind accompanied by corresponding changes in precipitation but is now used to describe seasonal changes in atmospheric circulation and precipitation associated with annual latitudinal oscillation of the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) between its limits to the north and south of the equator. Usually, the term monsoon is used to refer to the rainy phase of a seasonally changing pattern, although technically there is also a dry phase. The term is also sometimes used to describe locally heavy but short-term rains.

Background

The state of Maharashtra in India has a history of recurring droughts and acute water shortage throughout the last several decades (e.g. in 2013). There are both natural and man-made reasons for this situation. One-third of the state falls under the semi-arid climatic zone. Rainfall patterns have been increasingly erratic in recent years due to effects of climate change. Irrigation in the state is 16% of area under cultivation, much lower than the 42% national average. This has led to overuse of bore wells (tube wells), leading to a steep fall in groundwater levels. Water-intensive cash crops such as sugarcane are also cultivated in semi-arid regions, exacerbating the problem.[3]

In 2015, the state government officially declared that 60% of its villages were facing a "drought-like condition". This means that they reported a crop yield which was less than 50% of the standard yield in the area. In absolute figures, 23,811 of the state's 39,453 villages come in this category. This will result in a drastic fall in the state's agricultural output for the year, officials said.

Aamir Khan interacts with residents of participating villages of the Satyamev Jayate Water Cup 2018.
Aamir Khan interacts with residents of participating villages of the Satyamev Jayate Water Cup 2018.

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Maharashtra

Maharashtra

Maharashtra is a state in the western peninsular region of India occupying a substantial portion of the Deccan Plateau. Maharashtra is the second-most populous state in India and the second-most populous country subdivision globally. It was formed on 1 May 1960 by splitting the bilingual Bombay State, which had existed since 1956, into majority Marathi-speaking Maharashtra and Gujarati-speaking Gujarat. Maharashtra is home to the Marathi people, the predominant ethno-linguistic group, who speak the Marathi language, the official language of the state. The state is divided into 6 divisions and 36 districts, with the state capital being Mumbai, the most populous urban area in India, and Nagpur serving as the winter capital, which also hosts the winter session of the state legislature. Godavari and Krishna are the two major rivers in the state. Forests cover 16.47 per cent of the state's geographical area. Out of the total cultivable land in the state, about 60 per cent is used for grain crops in the Deccan region, rice in coastal Konkan, and other high rainfall areas.

India

India

India, officially the Republic of India, is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by area, the second-most populous country, and the most populous democracy in the world. Bounded by the Indian Ocean on the south, the Arabian Sea on the southwest, and the Bay of Bengal on the southeast, it shares land borders with Pakistan to the west; China, Nepal, and Bhutan to the north; and Bangladesh and Myanmar to the east. In the Indian Ocean, India is in the vicinity of Sri Lanka and the Maldives; its Andaman and Nicobar Islands share a maritime border with Thailand, Myanmar, and Indonesia. The nation's capital city is New Delhi.

2013 drought in Maharashtra

2013 drought in Maharashtra

The 2013 drought in Maharashtra in India came about after the region received lower rainfall during the monsoon season June to September 2012. It is considered as the region's worst drought in 40 years. The worst-hit areas in Maharashtra were Solapur, Parbhani, Ahmednagar, Latur, Pune, Satara, Beed and Nashik. Residents of Latur, Osmanabad, Nanded, Aurangabad, Jalna, Jalgaon and Dhule districts were also affected by this famine.

Climate change

Climate change

In common usage, climate change describes global warming—the ongoing increase in global average temperature—and its effects on Earth's climate system. Climate change in a broader sense also includes previous long-term changes to Earth's climate. The current rise in global average temperature is more rapid than previous changes, and is primarily caused by humans burning fossil fuels. Fossil fuel use, deforestation, and some agricultural and industrial practices increase greenhouse gases, notably carbon dioxide and methane. Greenhouse gases absorb some of the heat that the Earth radiates after it warms from sunlight. Larger amounts of these gases trap more heat in Earth's lower atmosphere, causing global warming.

Cash crop

Cash crop

A cash crop or profit crop is an agricultural crop which is grown to sell for profit. It is typically purchased by parties separate from a farm. The term is used to differentiate marketed crops from staple crop in subsistence agriculture, which are those fed to the producer's own livestock or grown as food for the producer's family.

History

Aamir Khan's TV series Satyamev Jayate, which discussed wide-ranging social issues plaguing India, had originally addressed the issue of water scarcity and the shortcomings of water management in India in the 12th episode of the first season, which was broadcast on 22 July 2012. After the series ended its run in November 2014, Khan and the show's director Satyajit Bhatkal decided to take up a cause that they could stay with for several years and show tangible results. They settled upon the tackling the problem of chronic water shortage in rural Maharashtra. Khan and Bhatkal, along with Khan's wife Kiran Rao and others from the TV series core team spent more than a year understanding the issue and researching possible solutions. In 2016, they set up Paani Foundation.[4]

In April–May 2016, India watched in horror as poignant images of drought emerged from its richest state, Maharashtra. A train commissioned by the railways had to be arranged to supply water to Latur city. Yet, in the same year, there was a citizens’ response to drought when the Paani Foundation was formed with a mission to make Maharashtra ‘drought-free’.[5]

Satyamev Jayate Water Cup

Introduction

Satyamev Jayate Water Cup, billed as a "people's movement against drought", is the primary event organized by Paani Foundation every year starting late March-early April up to late May-early June. It is a competition among participating the villages to complete the maximum possible amount of work for watershed development and water conservation within their habitats before the monsoon season begins. The competition is intended to be a platform to get people to volunteer to carry out watershed development works throughout the periphery of their villages.

The foundation selects drought-hit tehsils, trains a group of residents in watershed development and organizes a 45-day ‘water cup’ contest among villages to see who creates the maximum possible rainwater storage capacity, thereby gaming water conservation.[5]

Villagers prepare for the upcoming Satyamev Jayate Water Cup 2018.
Villagers prepare for the upcoming Satyamev Jayate Water Cup 2018.

Rules and guidelines

The Foundation provides training on technical aspects and social leadership to a small number of representatives from each village before the competition. These representatives (called Jal doot or 'water messengers') are expected to return to their villages and mobilize fellow villagers to work on watershed management structures around the village. The competition rules stress on the importance of shramdaan (volunteer labour) by people. The Foundation itself does not provide financial assistance to carry out works, except bearing the costs of the training program and prizes for the winners. The villages are expected to arrange for finances from internal, government or private sources. The Foundation also has several partner organizations that lease machinery such as excavators, JCBs or offer other expertise to the participating villages, free of cost. However any material or fuel costs have to be borne by the village.[6]

Status

The Foundation organized the first Satyamev Jayate Water Cup competition in 2016. The idea was tested in 3 talukas, with 116 villages in its first year. Subsequently, the competition expanded to include several talukas and thousands of villages in the state in the next two years. The foundation began modestly by selecting only 3 tehsils for the mission, but has scaled up to as many as 4,032 villages spread over 75 drought-hit tehsils in four regions of Maharashtra—Marathwada, Vidarbha, North Maharashtra, and Western Maharashtra in 2018. In 2016 and 2017, the participating villages created an aggregate storage capacity of 100 billion litres of water.[5]They also encourage villages which are now water sufficient to take up permaculture.

Scope of Satyamev Jayate Water Cup [1]
Year Number of talukas Number of villages covered
2016 3 116
2017 30 1321
2018 75 4025
2019 76 4400

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Habitat

Habitat

In ecology, the term habitat summarises the array of resources, physical and biotic factors that are present in an area, such as to support the survival and reproduction of a particular species. A species habitat can be seen as the physical manifestation of its ecological niche. Thus "habitat" is a species-specific term, fundamentally different from concepts such as environment or vegetation assemblages, for which the term "habitat-type" is more appropriate.

Excavator

Excavator

Excavators are heavy construction equipment consisting of a boom, dipper, bucket and cab on a rotating platform known as the "house". The house sits atop an undercarriage with tracks or wheels. They are a natural progression from the steam shovels and often mistakenly called power shovels. All movement and functions of a hydraulic excavator are accomplished through the use of hydraulic fluid, with hydraulic cylinders and hydraulic motors. Due to the linear actuation of hydraulic cylinders, their mode of operation is fundamentally different from cable-operated excavators which use winches and steel ropes to accomplish the movements.

JCB (company)

JCB (company)

JCB is a British multinational manufacturer of equipment for construction, agriculture, waste handling, and demolition, founded in 1945 and based in Rocester, Staffordshire, England. The word "JCB" is also often used colloquially as a generic description for mechanical diggers and excavators and now even appears in the Oxford English Dictionary, although it is still held as a trademark.

Tehsil

Tehsil

A tehsil is a local unit of administrative division in some countries of South Asia. It is a subdistrict of the area within a district including the designated populated place that serves as its administrative centre, with possible additional towns, and usually a number of villages. The terms in India have replaced earlier terms, such as pargana (pergunnah) and thana.

Funding and associated organizations

Paani Foundation is supported by some well-known Indian businesspersons and philanthropic organizations such as the Tata Trusts headed by Ratan Tata, Reliance Foundation, Rajiv Bajaj, Deepak Parekh, and Ajay Piramal. The funds are used by Paani Foundation for administration of the competition, training camps and prizes.[7]

The Ahmednagar-based Watershed Organization Trust (WOTR) is the Foundation's Knowledge Partner. It creates content and imparts technical training to participants during training camps.[8] Bharatiya Jain Sanghatana (BJS), a Pune-based non-profit organization, was also associated with the Foundation. In 2018, it donated free machine usage hours to villages which have achieved a certain level of work through manual labour.[9]

In 2019, for the fourth Water Cup, Paani Foundation joined hands with Ahmednagar-based NGO Snehalaya to raise and route all funds received via donations, towards machine support for villages.[10]

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Tata Sons

Tata Sons

Tata Sons Private Limited is the parent company of the Tata Group and holds the bulk of shareholding in the Tata group of companies including their land holdings across India, tea estates and steel plants. It is a privately owned conglomerate of nearly 100 companies encompassing several primary business sectors: chemicals, consumer products, energy, engineering, information systems, materials, and services. Headquarters are in Mumbai.

Ratan Tata

Ratan Tata

Ratan Naval Tata is an Indian industrialist and former chairman of Tata Sons. He was also the chairman of the Tata Group from 1990 to 2012, serving also as interim chairman from October 2016 through February 2017. He continues to head its charitable trusts. In 2008, he received the Padma Vibhushan, the second highest civilian honour in India, after receiving the Padma Bhushan, the third highest civilian honour in 2000.

Reliance Foundation

Reliance Foundation

Reliance Foundation is an Indian non-profit organisation which was founded in 2010 by Mukesh Ambani. It is wholly owned by Reliance Industries Limited and is one of the largest non-profit foundations in the country.

Rajiv Bajaj

Rajiv Bajaj

Rajiv Bajaj is an Indian businessman, and the managing director of Bajaj Auto since 2005. He introduced the Pulsar range of motorcycles credited with reviving the fortunes of the ailing company. India Today magazine ranked him #42nd in their India's 50 Most powerful people of 2017 list.

Deepak Parekh

Deepak Parekh

Deepak Parekh is an Indian businessman and the Chairman of Housing Development Finance Corporation, India's leading housing finance company. It is based in Mumbai.

Ajay Piramal

Ajay Piramal

Ajay Gopikisan Piramal is an Indian billionaire industrialist, and the chairman of the Piramal Group, a conglomerate with interests in pharmaceutical, financial services, real estate, healthcare analytics and glass packaging. As of September 2022, his net worth was estimated at US$3 billion.

Ahmednagar

Ahmednagar

Ahmednagar, is a city located in the Ahmednagar district in the state of Maharashtra, India, about 120 km northeast of Pune and 114 km from Aurangabad. Ahmednagar takes its name from Ahmad Nizam Shah I, who founded the town in 1494 on the site of a battlefield where he won a battle against superior Bahamani forces. It was close to the site of the village of Bhingar. With the breakup of the Bahmani Sultanate, Ahmad established a new sultanate in Ahmednagar, also known as Nizam Shahi dynasty.

Source: "Paani Foundation", Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, (2022, November 25th), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paani_Foundation.

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References
  1. ^ a b Griffin, Peter (28 April 2018). "Drought and the superstar". The Hindu. Retrieved 22 July 2018.
  2. ^ 1.25L from cities to work in villages for ‘paani’ on May 1
  3. ^ Droughts in Maharashtra: Lack of management or vagaries of climate change?
  4. ^ Aamir’s Paani makes a splash
  5. ^ a b c Sreevatsan, Ajai (26 June 2018). "How Maharashtra, Gujarat, Bengaluru, Chennai are tackling water crisis". Livemint.com. Retrieved 21 July 2018.
  6. ^ About the Water Cup - Paani Foundation
  7. ^ Aamir Khan in lead role as water crusader: Generates awareness on water conservation in drought-prone Maharashtra
  8. ^ Paani Foundation is creating a new paradigm for fighting drought
  9. ^ Paani Foundation to join hands with Bharatiya Jain Sanghatana for anti-drought campaign
  10. ^ "Snehalaya | Paani Foundation". Women Empowerment | Ahmednagar | Snehalaya. Retrieved 23 June 2019.
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