Water bodies are being encroached upon and destroyed right under our nose. In other words, it would be right to say that people have been destroying water bodies with government help. Government buildings have been built on water bodies.
If there are no water bodies, then what is the necessary for water ways and catchment areas? All water bodies have become commercial and housing complexes. Steps are being taken to renovate ancient buildings and to maintain them properly without altering their originality.
But did we take action to maintain mother nature who gives us life? Regrettably no one gives any think to that. We have been watching mutely numerous water sources like lakes and tanks on either side of the highways being encroached upon and converting them into garbage dumping yards and godowns.
Since no one is interested in protecting them the judiciary itself has taken upon itself the task of protecting the water sources. We should thank the judiciary. The Cape Town in south Africa, which has a population of just 40 lakh people, faced the unprecedented prospect of having to turn off water supplies due to the worst drought in a century. To avoid the crisis, citizens were limited to 50 litres of water per person per day.
The people of the town have been recycling water in various ways. The population of Chennai is 70 lakhs and it will be around one crore if the floating population is also added. Even if a person consumes five litres of water the city would require five crore litres of water per day.
If the need for water for purposes like washing of clothes and bathing is taken into account, the quantum of water needed by the city wold be enormous. Do we have that much quantity of water? We have been wasting water without saving rain water. The water finds its way to the sea. We have been driven to a situation forcing us to save whatever is left.
The court has also come down heavily on the government for its move to construct a building and has directed the government to protect the marsh land. The judges have also quoted from the old Tamil scholar Avvaiyar who had laid importance on the importance of water. At least now we should wake up from our slumber.