Ayyappa Masagi, A water Magician—
I pen down my Article on water Doctor, who is known for his work towards the cause for water conservation. But un fortunately I find now India is survived by lot of Hypocrisies and unwanted Anti- National Sentiments to divert towards shaking the moods of the Nation, which is of only Vikas & Vikas as envisaged by our PM Modi. I couldn’t control my thoughts towards this water magician who drew his attention on him as a magnet for his magnificent work towards Water Conservation. Let me give you a detailed analysis of this Magic man—
Ayyappa has implemented turnkey rainwater conservation projects in more than 70 industries, over 200 Apartments, more than 50 Educational institutions and over 3000 individual houses. As we all know that most human beings are about 60 per cent water, but there is one man whose every pore is about water. Ayyappa Masagi 59, known as water Doctor who combines his native intelligence with modern Technology and ideas to respect, harvest, conserve and utilise water more effectively. Ayyappa is famous for reversing the fortunes of thousands by getting them to practise rainwater harvesting and water conservation. His solution is simple—conserve. This man popularly referred to as water Magician, Water Gandhi, and water doctor—firmly believes that by the year 2020 India can Manage its water resources well and and be a water efficient country. And if Ayyappa has his way, the country may just end up achieving this goal. He also has recharged more borewells and constructed more Lakes than probably anyone else in the country. But he hasn’t always been actively involved in conserving water. In fact, for many years, Ayyappa was an Engineer for Larsen & Tourbo(L&T),before he started working in this field.
After few years of successful results in his native region, Gadag, Karnataka, he quit his job to focus on working in the field of rainwater harvesting. It was in 2004, when he earned the Ashoka fellowship for his work on Water conservation. A year later with the support of Ashoka Innovators for the Public, he started Water Literacy Foundation, located in Bangalore, India. This organization is working to support farmers by giving them knowledge about non-irrigational agriculture and rainwater harvesting and realising projects that fight water scarcity. The activities of the foundation expand to individual houses and industries, trying to create solutions to the shortage of water linked to the fast-growing population of Bangalore. In 2008, the Foundation became associated with a new project: Rain Water Concepts Pvt.Ltd., in a cross subsidisation model. The social business model which brings about – implements rainwater harvesting systems for industries, besides it is funding the campaigns of the foundation among farmers and schools. Ayyappa Masagi was awarded the Jamnalal Bajaj Award in 2009. After four year, the organisation entered the Limca Book of Records for constructing 500 Lakes- that is the highest number of artificial lakes created NGO claim to have indirectly recharged more than 70,000 borewells and reached around 1.5 Mn people in 36,000 locations.
The ideas and Goal of this Organization is about raising awareness about water shortages and implementing rainwater harvesting systems in to farm houses, and industries. It offers several systems—
Rooftop water Harvesting
Lake Type borewell recharging
Steam water harvesting
Sump type borewell recharging
Non -Irrigational agricultural practices
Tree- based agriculture.
It also sponsors lectures and gives talks at conferences such as TEDx conference. School educational programs, or world water day events.
Ayyappa Masagi has a simple message: “You want water? Call me”, thousands have. And his phone keeps ringing dozens of times a day. There appears to be an endless supply of patients for the man nicknamed India’s “Water Doctor”. “I faced a lot of water problems in my childhood, I used to go at 3am to fetch water from the stream. So, I made an oath that when I grew up, I would find a solution. So, I Quit my job as a mechanical Engineer in 2002 to solve India’s water Problem”, said Ayyappa.
India is undergoing a Catostrphy, In India we find about 330 Mn people are suffering water shortages after the failure of the last two Monsoons. Reservoirs were dry especially during 2015 period. Farmers are committing suicide. Thousands of drought-stricken villagers have flocked to cities, desperate for water, praying for rain. According to Ayyappa’s calculations, if just 30 percent of India’s rainwater were captured and stored, “One year’s rain would sustain the Nation for three years”.
Amazing Work of Ayyappa Masagi—
In 2014, Ayyappa bought 84 acres of barren land near Chilamathur, famously drought struck region of Andhra Pradesh 100 Km North-east of Bangalore. “The Wind here was like a fire wind. I told my partners, ‘Within one year I will make this Land a water bowl”. What we find that Today there is a network of 25,000 Sand-filled pits and four new Lakes capture and store any rainwater that falls here. No drop is allowed to escape into rivers and run off into sea. It stays on and in the Land, keeping the subsoil charged with water which, when needed is, drawn from five shallow bore-wells. What we find Amazing is that the top soil from digging lakes has helped the land which has been planted with trees will form dense forest, what happens is that 40 per cent will be fruits and vegetables have also been planted, there will also be dairy here too. The plan by Ayyappa Masagi was to develop a sustainable organic farm which is totally self—sufficient for all its water needs.
The Mission Statement – Water Literacy Foundation, Ayyappa is training “Water warriors”, to spread his message. To his credit, he also has written many books and also trained more than 100 interns from India and abroad, including Germany, Japan, and the U.S., “If you talk, nothing will happen. You have to do something and prove it said Ayyappa.
Ayyappa not only provides services to individuals but to corporates and other Educational institutions as well. He has managed to create a community of ‘Water Warriors’ who practise his methods and educate others about them.
Ayyappa Masagi in his own words – “Our country doesn’t need grand plans like river-linking to tackle the problem of water shortage. In fact, that project is an unnecessary expense for the Government. If we need to save water, every farmer and ever organization should plan ahead. And if they do, this country will soon become water- efficient.”, he says.
As I come to an end of an Inspiring Article on Ayyappa Masagi, “water Doctor/Water Magician”, I find everyone in India should use water Judiciously, especially from taking bath to Rain water harvesting in every household. Its high time all the rivers need to be interlinked to solve the water crisis, and incorporate Masagi’s ideas to water efficient and self-sufficient, Probably, no other issue than water, exposes the fact that what we have is far more enough than what we want. Thus, he stresses that there are two kinds of water that he works on—Rain water & Grey water (Water from washing, bathing, etc). what we find is that only 10 percent of water is used for drinking while the rest is wasted. If this grey water is channelized judiciously then it will get absorbed in the Earth itself and enrich the soil forever, let’s conserve and learn the art of doing it.
Dr. Sukanya Iyer