Portrait of a water-wise hemlet

Being the ‘neighbour by choice’ of the communities living in and around its project sites, is the most keenly pursued goal that the Tata Power Company has set for itself. And every unit in this camp, irrespective of scale and size, is equally motivated on this front. But the impact of the work done by Coastal Gujarat Power Limited (CGPL), a wholly owned subsidiary of Tata Power Company, still deserves a special mention.  

Tragadi Bunder is temporary hemlet tucked away in the vast contours of coastal Kutch in Gujarat. For the past few years it has provided shelter, albeit a temporary one, to the few hundred migrant fisherfolk who spend the entire fishing season, about eight months in a year. It’s been a bitter battle as the living conditions in Tragadi are hostile –plagued by bare minimum amenities The most disturbing drawback being shortage in supply of clean drinking water.

The Tragadi bunder dwellers use ground water wells as the main source of drinking water. Most of these wells are shallow and are turning saline due to their proximity to sea water. As if this was not enough, an abundance of Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) has been identified in the water here. Little surprise, therefore, that there is a high incidence of water borne diseases in the region.

However, gusts of fresh air, ushering in sweeping changes, have been blowing in this region, ever since CGPL identified this area as the site for its ambitious project the 4000 MW Ultra Mega Power Plant. This year, under CGPL’s watch, water was delivered inside the temporary hemlet, almost at the doorstep of Tragadi bunder’s temporary householders.

CGPL has built three large storage tanks with carrying capacity of about 5000 litres each inside the village. A 15,000 litres tanker is sent across every day to refill the tanks which cater the water need of the families of transient fishing families.   The water is shared among 92 families,.

So the parched village and its people are being re-energised. Time to unveil the next level of activities with partner CGPL? A long-term strategy, perhaps, to build a team of water managers, savvy enough to lay the foundation of a water-secure temporary hemlet.

Source: Reflections Annual Report


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