Sunshine Story: Village cuts down on electricity; pools 50 lakh for clean, drinkable water

From cutting down on electricity use to saving up nearly Rs 50 lakh from its gram panchayat fund for a purifying plant, how a Bhiwandi village, fought back to receive clean, drinkable water Until recently, the 40,000-odd residents of Shelar, a village in Bhiwandi, were a harried lot.
Leaks in their pipeline network meant that villagers received contaminated water, and that too, with poor force.
If that wasn’t bad enough, cases of residents suffering from water-borne diseases had become commonplace.
After decades of neglect at the hands of the authorities, the Shelar Gram Panchayat and villagers finally decided to take matters in their own hands, a few years ago.
The Shelar Gram Panchayat invested over two years into making the dream project of setting up the water purifying plant, a reality A fight for clean water Situated 40 km from Mumbai, Shelar has been facing the brunt of polluted and poor water supply for several years now.
Sandeep Patil, 27, the present sarpanch, said that around three years ago, the gram panchayat tried to get a separate water pipeline from the corporation.
"We started getting quotations from everyone in Mumbai, but all of them had given us a budget of more than Rs 3 crore," said Patil.
As a starting point, the gram panchayat decided to save the Rs 27 lakh that it received annually from the Central government, for at least two years.
We also got the villagers to assist them, in order to reduce the labour cost," said Bhoir, adding that the company finally agreed to install the plant with a budget of Rs 57 lakh.
Today, the plant purifies three lakh litres of water per hour.

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