To address the major water crisis in the desert state of Rajasthan India, the International Sri Deep Madhavananda Ashram Fellowship has launched a Desert Rainwater Harvesting initiative. This Rajasthan initiative will utilise traditional Rainwater Harvesting techniques in conjunction with community based watershed management plans, to provide a sustainable model to be used in drought affected areas throughout the world.
The Desert Rainwater Harvesting Initiative is a grass roots project aimed at alleviating poverty and providing a reliable water supply to some of the most remote populations in rural Rajasthan, who have been in the grip of severe drought for the last decade. This project is giving life to people as well as to wildlife in area.
About water it is written in the Shiva Maha Purana:
पानीयदानं परमं दानानामुत्तमं सदा।
सर्वेषां जीवपुंजानां तर्पणं जीवनं स्मृतम्॥१॥
pānīyadānaṃ paramaṃ dānānāmuttamaṃ sadā.
sarveṣāṃ jīvapuṃjānāṃ tarpaṇaṃ jīvanaṃ smṛtam॥1॥
Of all the charities, the gift of water is the best,
because all living beings are satisfied with water alone.
Water is considered as life itself.
जलाश्रयविनिर्माणं महानन्दकरं भवेत्॥२॥
jalāśrayavinirmāṇaṃ mahānandakaraṃ bhavet॥2॥
Therefore one should lovingly build the water sheds or water tanks, which provide the bliss.
इह लोके परे वापि सत्यं सत्यं न संशय:।
Iha loke pare vāpi satyaṃ satyaṃ na saṃśaya:.
In the present world as well as the ones which have to come, these indeed provide delight.
Therefore, the people should build, the step-wells, wells, tanks and other.