Pune: Kondhwa based social worker Mr Saleem Mulla has taken a lead role in recharging the underground watertable of a well situated in survey no 42, Jawaharganj Kondhwa Khurd area of Mithanagar locality of downtown Kondhwa and also cleaned it of its silt and garbage completely with donations from local residents.
The well is now supplying fresh water to area residents winning praise for the painstaking efforts undertaken by Mulla. The well is hundred –years -old well and has lain dormant for the last 11 years. The area is dominated by labour class , small businessmen and small time employees who form a major chunk of the residents.The area has been reeling under severe water crisis for the past one decade and there has been no regular water supply to the area till date. Water tankers are the only lifeline for the water starved residents of the area.
The well was lying unused due which there was a deep built up the silt deposition in it to ground level, making it impossible to use. In fact, around 75 tractors of silt were unearthed from the well, with drilling hitting a depth of 45 feet. Commenting on the world, Saleem Mulla says that the rejuvenation success is a testimony of people’s power through community participation which no longer is dependent government and local bodies like Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC).
“ People from all communities comprising Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs, Christians and other faiths have backed me in this noble work for the cause of humanity. I have been successful because of all my well wishers and it is not one man’s job. I credit the success to all the people who have helped in this ardous task ,” he reiterated.
Explaining the rationale behind reviving the well, Mull said that poor water supply in the area taking into account a large number of population of the area which is being fed by water tankers day in and day out compelled him to take up the cause. “ I could not bear the difficulties related to water scarcity being faced by the people including women, senior citizens and small children. Hence I took up the intiative with missionary zeal and with the backing of the people have been successful ,” he said.
Saleem , a resident of Vita in Sangli district migrated to Pune in 1990 and since has been staying in Kondhwa. He is into marriage pandal decoration business located in Kondhwa Khurd behind Ashok Mews Society. According to Saleem, the well was functional from 1984 to 1990 where the residents freely drew water from the well. In 1999, Kondhwa area was included in PMC limits and since then well was abandoned and was used for dumping garbage, he explained.
The well acquired the shape of a garbage depot after that. Mulla later made several appeals in writing to the PMC ( Wanavd Ward Office) seeking rejuvenation of the well but it fell on deaf ears. “ The PMC completely ignored my genuine request which was in the best interests of the people. The PMC did not pay any attention giving a flimsy excuse that the well came under private land,” he said.
During the last six years from 2010 to 2016, the well became a virtual dumpyard and became almost a flat land. Saleem Mulla is of the view that there are dozens of vanishing well in Kondhwa which if investigated and rejuvenated can put an end to the permanent water crisis in Kondhwa.
The well is over 100 years old and is 55 feet deep. The rejuvenation work began on June 6, 2016, the first day of the holy month of Ramadan. Around 8 to 10 persons work on daily basis at the well. Besides, machinery has deployed for rapid culling out of silt and foul smelling garbage from the bowels of the well. The work which is now ninety percent done will be hundred percent complete on the occasion of Eid. People can avail the drinking water facility from the day of Eid. The well has a natural source of fresh drinking water.
Courtesy: Muslim Mirror