River Kali East The Saga of Death & Towards Revival, February, 2010
The Research & Relief Society envisages a cleaner river in the coming times. The Society looks forward towards an Action Plan being launched by the Government to make it clean and creating it an asset to the region it passes from rather a liability spreading epidemics.
The Protection Campaign launched by the Society in March 2009 would go on full swing in the coming years with support from various agencies. Presently the campaign is very active in District Meerut and Muzaffarnagar and we foresee extending it to other districts as well which has the river passing through them.
We visualise including the industries and Municipality Corporations as major stake holders in the Campaign to reduce the pollution from their activities as well. The villagers once included as stakeholders have contributed majorly towards reducing pollution from their side. Once these agencies would be included as well, the river would be free from any incoming pollution and thus would lead to a cleaner river.
The Research & Relief Society has been committed to the cause of the river but the efforts of the Society are restricted due to the limited support it could accommodate through voluntary activities of the members of the Society and the stakeholders in the program.
Towards the same cause, the Research & Relief Society wishes to knock at the door of the Hobble Supreme Court of India filing a Public Interest Litigation under Article 32 of the Indian Constitution as what is being faced by the citizens of Village Dedwa amounts to violation of Article 21 that is Right to life guaranteed by the Constitution of India in many respects. Through this petition, we wish to represent the plight of the poor inhabitants of this village who have not been able to represent their cause even to the local authorities. The Society in the past has appealed this cause to the local authorities as well as the Pollution Regulatory Body in the state but to no use. Thus Supreme Court of India also the apex juridical body in the country seems to be the right forum to give the poor villagers relief from the plight they are suffering presently.
A cleaner Kali is a far reached dream though the Research & Relief Society has been committed to the cause with its various activities bringing positive results. But the immediate concern is to end the plight of the people inhabiting the localities on the catchment of the river. Rehabilitation and Migration though sound lucrative, but are not a sustainable solution to the problem. Thus government and other agencies should initiate programs tocreate sustainable environment and living conditions for these people presently dwelling the banks of death.
Immediate Action for the Villages on the Bank of Death
Research & Relief Society has been striving to make the living better for the poverty struck villagers but there are certain aspects on which immediate action is required to make their life slightly better and reduce their plight.
First and foremost, their right to life is at stake with no provision for safe and clean drinking water. Thus making them available with clean drinking water has to be one of the major priorities. A water pipeline with an overhead tank at a considerable distance from the river needs to be installed.
As already stated, the river pollution has had a grave impact on the health of the villagers and in absence of a Health Centre in the villages, it is only an additional obligation on the light purses of the poor villagers. Thus a Health Centre/ Dispensary needs to be installed immediately so as to provide them with basic health facilities at least inside their villages and need not go outside for the same.
The poor villagers have not been able to raise their voice to the appropriate authority and one of the major reasons for the same is low literacy rate in the villages. Thus efforts need to be taken to make the coming generation not only literate but educated and thus literacy should be on the forefront agenda when it comes to the development of these villages.
The responsible government bodies should feel responsible for the cause and shall make provision to better and sustainable living.