Saturday, April 21, 2012

Summer - priorities- water management

Ok, everyone is reeling under the heated atmosphere. Another kind of heat is generated at random at home. Whenever a tap is opened, it will give stress to others. " Are they using water judiciously" is the hook that appears in the mind. If it is a helper, she will be more interested in finishing her chores and rushing home, by using the tap full  flow. The alert is more sharper.

                                      (Courtesy Google)
This gives rise to heated arguments, and admonishments.

Meanwhile, the overhead tank, the sump, are almost empty, giving anxiety to the head of the house. The freshwater tap, that is 6 feet under, comes to life, but once a week, for half an hour or so.

The search for the water tanker is on.. then comes the shock that water is costly. Even borewell water. A small tanker of 5 thousand litres costs , in march, 400, in end of march 1100! Welcome to Secunderabad area of the twin cities.

All these dramas are not played out in old city/hyderabad metro water supply areas. It is only on the cantonment stretch, the sinner do not get water supply for summer months. Very fair!

                                   (Courtesy The Hindu)
The citizens/netas are doing their bit. Finding out why / and why not, and the nuances of public administration, where words are used to only explain vaguely , how water supply cannot be regulated,  in Cantonment area.

Anyone who reads that,will wonder,what a dispute between Govt. departments, got to do with supply in my taps? But citizen is the last one to understand and appreciate administrative constraints, or ego problems or lack so sensitivity on the part of officials. They are sitting in big huge AC rooms with water flowing in houses without any problem so cares for ordinary middle and lower class guys. 

Meanwhile many of the houses have decided to take law in their own hands. Many have installed illegal pumps to suck the water , as and when supplied.

 So there it goes, another bothersome hook to alert the mind.When we notice our neighbours using the pumps for suction of drinking water, we get into arguments with them, and  a small fight. Every time we meet them near the compound walls, we need  to avert our gazes with  anger,  to keep our watch over them and our moral high ground.

Yes, we have charged our wells and borewell with rain water harvesting. But what is the use of only two houses in ten doing that?

Anyway , back to the daily grind. When we get the tanker after shelling out 1100, the head of the house has a good night sleep. But he admonishes all concerned, "careful" with a scowling glance at the terrace.I react with a sad,and dejected " may be we have to let those die". he gives me a deadly look and I grin to diffuse the atmospheric.

Meanwhile ,I am raking my brain.
Who is wasting water?
Where is it used more?
How to keep the dog area clean without using too much  water?
How many times should I use the washing machine?
Should I start regulating the supply pipe itself?

Most important , how to keep those plants alive ,and regulate water supply to them.

My domestic helper believes , just by throwing water over any area it gets cleaned, without using the broom, which is a strain on her health!If I restrict her , and start watching, my life gets more miserable. Unless I turn a blind eye, she gets mad at me! She loves  to  throwing water indiscriminately,while watering the plants, letting the water flow out with enough gushing noise alerting the neighborhood!

                              (courtesy Google)

So restricting her is the first job.I have a big talk with her and bring her into the planning and executing stages. "I should wash most of the clothes by hand, and collect the water and transfer it to the plants". easy.

In the kitchen, I get the tap regulated . I also make arrangements to collect the draining water in big basins, and use it for the hardy plants. The soap water is not acceptable to plants. I switch over to dear Rita powder/soap nut powder/Besan .Utensils are washed with utmost care, using paper for cleaning them first and then with little scrub and water.

The tea water and rice washed water are all used judiciously for plants. The plants are getting good nourishment now.

The most important area of terrace garden, needed more thoughts and expenditure. First I bought about 200 plastic plates/ small basins. Placed most of the plants in them. Bought full length pipe and started watering process carefully. For bigger pots, I have inserted pet bottles with holes and poured only that much water into them.
Hey, there is no draining of excess water now. whatever is collected in the plates, holders, is used back . Only fallout is lifting those pots all the time and checking for extra moisture. Tiresome, but temporary inconvenience.

Meanwhile, thanks to those years of re-charging the borewell, it is giving atleast 200 litres of water once in every 5 hours or so. Our daily schedule  ticks with the thought of water pumping, closing the pump, next  scehedule etc ..

Only mangoes and jasmine makes the summer bearable.

Lots of mistakes in this page, but I am mad right now and want to
share it with everyone!


  1. Water is vital for our daily life and something that is not appreciated until it begins to trickle out...
    It's always important to be water-wise and conserve this precious resource as much as possible. I hope you get some good rains soon.

  2. Hi Pattu,
    After reading your article i felt deeply concerned about the water shortage which you people are facing.Hats off to you and few other enlightened citizens who are doing your bit to ease the situation.But the problem is, such issues need concerted efforts by all inculding the maid.We Indians have become self serving and would suck water illegally through pumps without giving a thought to others.
    I wonder why the administration hasn't taken remedial measures to solve this recurring problem.It shows that a beautiful city like Hyderabad is so much neglected by powers that be.If only i could help in any way!

  3. Hi There, Thanks for coming to my blog. Please come back anytime.

    We are spoiled here in the USA by having most all of the water we need.. Since my husband and I are gardeners, we use that water ALOT during the hot summers --watering our plants...

    I am sorry to hear that you have trouble having enough water. Do you have much rain there? Lots of people here have huge 'rain barrels' in their yards.. They use the water from their rain barrels to water their yards...

    Come back to see me anytime.

  4. Loved the message! Wish more people ponder up on your words, and take a step forward to save water.

  5. Whoa! Mad you are and I can empathise with it. I am after my maid not to waste water and tried even showing her the charts that showed how water gets depleted for everyone. But she can't understand. For, she doesn't get any water at all in her slums, she even carries at least 10l of drinking water every day from our society. We have a community sump and there is no water problem in our area,but I hate using tons of water to wash the balconies and the doors and windows.

    I found this blog only now! Love it :)

  6. Interesting read. Was a good lesson on Water Management. We at Bhopal also have similar problems.

  7. Nick, I appreciate that. Here , we need to educate, and also conserve water.

    In this respect I would blame the politicians and the administrators, who are not doing their duties.

  8. He Betsy, Welcome here and thanks!

    Yes, I do think about that river that flows through Knoxville! :-)

    We do take precautions, but when we watch other people doing illegal stuff, it gets me mad.

  9. Hi Asha,

    Thanks, Your page , was what that set me to this outpouring.:-)

  10. Hello Zephyr,


    I am so glad you took time off to read, and also add your beautiful comment.

    The middle class households have been conditioned to save water, especially , in
    TN and Telangana :-)

  11. Welcome Subramanian Sir.

    Bhopal has water problem? Sad.

    It is time a consorted effort is made to solve the water issues.
    Wishful thinking :-)

  12. water problem in some parts of the country is horrifying. and u r right, we need to use water judiciously.

  13. Wow, Vetrimagal--I am so glad you visited my site--which has prompted to visit your site and discover things that I love and am so passionate about! Kudos for writing about the next decade water is the core issue of this Earth. May I repost this article in

  14. @ Debajyoti, Actually in our area, it is the administrative apathy, and not lack of water, that is causing shortage.

    @ Bhavana, Welcome here Bhavana, I am glad you found my post.

    I like the lively posts you write.
    Wish you will take up more serious causes to awaken our sleeping Indian consciousnesses.:-)

    Please feel free to post anywhere, I am glad you are giving my post a chance.

  15. For some good reason I stay in the lucky part of Bangalore and we do get adequate water and everyone at home try to use water as minimal as we can when we need it. In some parts of Bangalore its worse, I hear people actually camp outside a water tank overnight to get only 4 buckets of water in the morning on a FCFS basis. It is horrible.

  16. Hi Akshay,

    Yes, the inequality gets me mad, why not equal distribution, are some people lesser than others?
    Sad state of affairs.

  17. Amazing efforts there. I myself use water very judiciously and try to maximize its reuse, and have shifted to soap-nuts for all kind of cleaning purposes.

    Just one concern, u mentioned ur using paper to wipe off the utensils followed by minimum water, thats well thought off. but the usage of "paper" sounds a little disturbing, I am hopeful you are already aware of the amount of water that goes in paper processing. I would like to mention this practice followed by desert dwellers of India, as you have a garden and soil, they clean their utensils in sand and thereafter wipe it with a dry cloth, maybe u can think of using a little dry soil from ur garden to replace paper, as the dry soil can again go back to the plants too.

  18. Hi Aakanksha, Welcome here.
    thanks for the wonderful tip , added to my many ideas.

    The use of sand or mud is a good idea for for hardy vessels , which can tolerate scratch marks.I do that when I make Biryanis and other heavy and greasy food.

    I also use baking soda, for cleaning greasy, spice laden vessels. ( endless variations, my domestic help- grumbling).

    Using mud is a better idea, but I have a dog, many cats,/ some visiting Bandicoots who roam/prowl the compound. So cant put food scrapped items on the garden soil.

    Used scrap of Newspaper is always composted with other organic kitchen waste. I use newspaper to mulch the container plants too.

    Kindly see my other blog

  19. This year shortage of water will be acute.

  20. Anonymous12:32 PM

    I am following you there :)

  21. This comment has been removed by the author.

  22. Vetrimagal said...
    @Rajesh, Welcome here
    Thankfully for a few days it is cloudy and nice, ofcourse water usage is lesser.

    9:56 AM

  23. Yes, maids waste water indiscriminately. And, here we rely on borewell water that is depleting fast. Bangalore is facing a drought. I don't know what is going to happen. I am telling the kids constantly to conserve. I also use water from washing veggies, tea water etc. for the plants. No pipes, only bucket. No showers only bucket baths. I think water conservation is mandatory not something one has to do out of being environmentally friendly. I share your anguish!

  24. Thanks Rachan,
    Ater summer ends, we get rains and forget everything. No planning, no schemes,and then,election promises. the cycle goes on.

  25. Uppalji,
    Sorry, your comment was lying in the Spam area since days, and I checked it just now.

    Thanks for your concern. I am sure we need to pray for early rains, so that our admin. will have to fill our sumps with rain water atleast :-)

  26. Anonymous10:56 PM

    Very nice blog...Felt good reading it... You are inspirational in your writing...


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