Meet India’s Aquaman: 26-year-old Ramveer Tanwar who has been fighting the water crisis
Humans tend to forget that even though 70 per cent of the Earth is covered by water, only 2.5 per cent of the water is fresh. However, UP-based water crusader Ramveer Tanwar has not. This social activist’s journey began in 2013, years before #TrashTag went viral.
He went door-to-door meeting the people of his village, Dadha in Uttar Pradesh, talking to families about the depleting water sources, garbage control, and conserving ponds. Why? During his final year as a B.tech student at UP Technical University, Ramveer was alarmed by how the lakes he and his friends used to play in as kids, had disappeared. In fact, his home state alone had faced 13 consecutive droughts in the last 15 years.
Such a scenario seemed to foretell India’s ‘aquacalyptic’ future—reports show that: 600 million Indians face high-to-extreme water stress and about 2,00,000 people die every year due to inadequate access to safe water. The crisis is only going to get worse. By 2030, the country’s water demand is projected to be twice the available supply.
So the youngster—who hails from a family of farmers—started a local volunteer programme called Jal Chaupal; set up a double filtration system to revive dying water bodies as the waste in the water is domestic and not chemical; spent his own hard-earned salary from taking tuitions; encouraged local farmers to grow slush-eating fish to assist in the conservation efforts; started an online campaign called #Selfie_With_Pond via his Facebook page which now has over 1.5 lakh members.
Eventually, the government recognised his efforts and created a ‘Bhujal Sena’ (Groundwater Army) where groups of almost 50 villages would focus on water conservation. Currently, the engineer-turned-social activist has temporarily averted the immediate crisis by reviving around 12 lakes and ponds in the Greater Noida area, under his water conservation project.
To support his campaign, reach out here