Water, water everywhere – but no water to drink!
“I remember when I was a child. I used to watch the rivers flow with all its heavenly beauty. Devotees thronged there every morning, children took a delightful stroll into the sparkling waves, couples would bask at the bank of it and enjoy the cool breeze.” – my father reminisces.
But I never got to enjoy the rivers. What I see is the dark, hellish filth mistaken as rivers. No one can walk along the riverbanks without masks; foul smell hits our nose. Rivers have become dumping sites. Rivers – once known as the source of civilization – would be the fall of civilization.
Every year many die of diarrhea, dysentery and cholera. Not only humans, as animals also have died by drinking the poisonous water mixed with hospital wastages. No birds hover around the rivers. It has become a place of disgust.
Rivers which was regarded as bliss has now turned in abyss.
How? Good question.
Mahatma Gandhi once said: “Earth can fulfill one’s need, but can’t fulfill one’s greed.”
Who else can be so selfish as we, the so- called “intelligent”? In the name of development, we have destroyed every natural gift – cleared lush green forests, blasted rugged terrains and polluted pure rivers. No matter how hard we try to prove ourselves as the most developed, conscious organism, our deeds are worst than animals. We are the culprits.
Now is a good time to ponder; how does our action relate to the lives of the last person in society. In the last 10 years, the population of Kathmandu Valley has increased from 1.7 million to 2.51 million, according to the 2011 national census.
With the sharp increase in population, the demand for water naturally also has gone up. Currently Kathmandu Valley needs 350 million liters of water per day. But even in rainy seasons, KUKL (Kathmandu Upatyaka Khanepani Limited) is only able to supply 149.62 million liters per day. And during the dry season, the supply drops to 90.59 million. Hour-long power outages also prevents KUKL from pumping sufficient groundwater during the dry season.
As KUKLs supply remains erratic and unreliable, an increasing number of Valley residents are now dependent on the water supplied by private suppliers. Some families have not even installed the government tap.
We can see the plight. There are rivers everywhere, but no water. What a shame!
With deterioration of the rivers, even campaigns and big projects against pollution can’t make a difference. There is no mechanism in practice to sustain a program for longer that a limited period of time – when the funds are gone, the projects end.
It’s the bitter truth. But there is no use in crying over spilt milk. Rather than complaining, we should to take action! Together we can make change!
My heart crumbles with pain
when I see you, my mom
Just look at you;
Your beautiful and twinkling water
Have turned to black gutter
Your sizzling splashes
have turned disgusting passes.
I am sorry, very very sorry mother
Coz I am the one; to rape you
I forgot all your contributions
and all your love.
Now, no more….
I won’t make you suffer any longer
and I will make you stronger.
Let me start a fight
against myself and my selfishness
Yes, I would return your smile
For that I wouldn’t wait a while.