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A drop saved a bucket earned. On the eve of World Water Day, experts say water management is the solution to Mumbai’s water crisis 

SMITA DESHMUKH Times News Network 

While the Vision Mumbai task force is focussing on turning the city into Shanghai, a major dilemma seems to have been ignored — the water crisis hitting the city, which experts warn, can turn into a fullfledged war. As World Water Day tomorrow kicks off the UN’s International ‘Water for Life’ Decade, the water situation in Mumbai looks grim. The BMC has the capacity to supply 3,000 million litres a day (MLD), but the current shortfall of 1,000 MLD is projected to grow to 2,500 MLD in the next 15 years. 
Though the BMC took a policy decision in 2002 to have a mandatory rain water harvesting facility in new buildings constructed on plots measuring more than 10,000 sq mts, the policy is far from being implemented. Mumbai which has 2,000 mm waterfall annually is hardly harvesting any of it. Roshni Udyavar, head of the Rachana Sansad Institute of Environmental Architecture, feels that conservation of water is essential to combat the crisis. “In Pune, many developers use water harvesting practices, which Mumbai needs to follow,” she adds. 
What’s the most effective way to fill the growing gap between demand and supply of water? “The solution lies with people. Intelligent water management is the need of hour,” states environmentalist Rishi Aggarwal. Water conservationist Janak Daftary is working on Mission Jagruti, a project highlighting the need to save water, targeting 100 schools and colleges in the city. “It’s here where the change in mindset has to take place,” he adds. 

Save it now 

• Never throw water down the drain, it could be used for other purposes like watering plants 

• Use a bucket while bathing instead of the shower 

• Turn off the tap while shaving 

• Check whether the water pipes in your home are leakproof