Monday, 30th October 2017

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Coal hub tops water table in Dhanbad

Dhanbad district was ranked best in the country for water conservation measures undertaken by the the Jal Shakti Abhiyan

By Praduman Choubey in Dhanbad
  • Published 10.09.19, 1:25 AM
  • Updated 10.09.19, 1:25 AM
  • 2 mins read
One of the soak pits on Dhanbad Municipal Corporation premises on Monday Picture by Gautam Dey

Dhanbad district, where coal fires rage underground and which has some of the most polluted stretches in the state, has been ranked best in the country for water conservation measures undertaken under the Centre’s Jal Shakti Abhiyan.

Dhanbad deputy commissioner (DC) Amit Kumar announced the achievement on his official Twitter handle on Monday.

On the list published by the Union Jal Shakti ministry, Dhanbad with a relative score of 91.38 has beaten 253 districts to secure the first rank. It is followed by Mahaboobnagar (Telangana) with 89.48 and Kashnagar (Uttar Pradesh) with 70.43.

The development comes in the wake of a host of water conservation measures undertaken by the district administration, including the planting of 20 lakh saplings and the construction and renovation of over 900 ponds and over 15,000 trenches.

Dhanbad was at the third position on the list published on August 21 and improved its performance by planting more than 1 lakh saplings on September 5 on the divider of the 5km road between Memco Mor to City Centre Chowk and from City Centre to Gol Building Chowk.

Expressing satisfaction over the ranking, DC Amit Kumar said: “Though the results are encouraging, a lot of work is still left to be done.

“We are not going to stop after September 15 when the Jal Shakti Abhiyan will officially wind up. We plan to continue initiating measures and work towards our mission of turning Dhanbad green. We will have to ensure that every building in the urban areas have the mandatory rain water harvesting structures.”

Dhanbad mayor Chandrashekhar Agarwal said they would continue the sapling planting drive across all the five circles of the district — Jharia, Dhanbad, Sindri, Katras and Chhatatand.

“We have also developed a seed ball bank at our Bank Mor office where seed balls are being sold at a cost of Rs 2 apiece. These seed balls can be thrown in the bushy areas to grow plants,” he said.

Agarwal said a massive planting drive would be undertaken on September 15 at Hill Colony to plant more than 1 lakh saplings.

Jal Shakti Abhiyan is a time-bound water conservation campaign of the central government that started on July 1 and covered the most water-stressed districts during phase 1.

In the second phase from October 1 to November 30, states and Union territories witnessing retreating monsoon such as Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Pondicherry and Tamil Nadu will be covered.

Districts with critical or over-exploited groundwater as per the Central Ground Water Board report of 2017 have been categorised as water-stressed.

Digital glitch

Later on Monday, the Jal Sakhti Abhiyan website developed a glitch and the latest ranking could not be seen anymore.

District public relations officer Isha Khandelwal said: “Dhanbad has secured the first rank at the national level in Jal Shakti Abhiyan. The list was available in the morning, but due to some software update, the latest data are not available on the website.”