The project involved desilting 18 km along the Sai barrage to increase its holding capacity to 18.5 million cubic metre. Latur requires 18.25 million cubic meter water per annum. There are also plans to remove about 45 lakh cubic metre of silt.
A media report suggest that the effort to revive Manjra was steered by Mahadev Gomare and Makrand Jadhav, both followers of spiritual guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar’s Art Of Living (AOL), began in February 2013. Both convinced sarpanchs in Marathwada to attend a three-day camp in Bengaluru.
This led to improve the water levels in borewells and wells in surrounding villages. A part of it was funded by AOL, but people contributed too. Afterwards, 50 smaller projects were completed through people’s participation.
Reports say Sri Sri Ravi Shankar gave Rs 1 crore for the project while citizens contributed with funds and sought support for the Rs 8-crore project.
Village women in Latur district walk over two km at least twice a day to fetch water downtoearth
“About 28.5 lakh cubic meters of silt have been removed from six rivers in Latur, one of the worst drought-hit districts, due to which 10,150 acres of land have been irrigated,” Foundation’s founder Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, said.
Villagers go down a well in Harangul in Latur to get water indiatoday
“In the wake of severe drought conditions in several districts of Maharashtra, Art of Living volunteers under the project have been actively working towards reviving, cleaning and rejuvenating water bodies in Latur, Jalgaon, Osmanabad, Jalna, Nagpur, Kolhapur, Sangli, Nashik, Satara,” he said.
Under the river rejuvenation project, the foundation has identified 17 rivers in the country, out of which 13 are in Maharashtra.