· Chief Minister DevendraFadnavisand Aamir Khan appeal for mass participation to fight drought· 76 talukas from 24 districts to take part in the competition
Mumbai: Paani Foundation’s people’s movement to make Maharashtra drought-free! Fourth edition of the Satyamev Jayate Water Cup officially announced today.
Paani Foundation today announced the launch of the fourth edition of the Satyamev Jayate Water Cup, for the year 2019. The announcement was made at an official meeting held at the Chief Minister’s office Varsha, Mumbai. On the occasion a special video conference was held with District Collectors and CEOs of ZillaParishads all over Maharashtra along with senior officials from the Department of Water Conservation, Agriculture and Rural Development. The meeting was chaired by the Honorable Chief Minister Shri DevendraFadnavis along with Shri. PravinPardeshi, IAS, Principal Secretary to the CMand with the participation of Shri Aamir Khan, MsKiran Rao, Shri Satyajit Bhatkal and Dr. Avinash Pol from Paani Foundation. The video conference was held to discuss how best to combine the energies of civil society and the efforts of the government during the Water Cup 2019, with the common aim of drought-proofing Maharashtra.
Paani Foundation is an initiative of the core team of the television show, Satyamev Jayate and has been working since the year 2016 to create a people’s movement for a drought-free Maharashtra. Satyamev Jayate Water Cup is a competition between different villages to see who can do the best work for watershed management and water conservation during the period of the competition. The competition will run from 8thApril to 22nf May, 2019. The top three villages will get a cash prize of Rs. 75 lakhs, Rs. 50 lakhs and Rs. 40 lakhs respectively. In addition, the top village from each taluka will get a cash prize of Rs. 10 lakhs. The total prize money which villages stand to win in the competition is nearly Rs. 9.15 crores.
As part of the competition, Paani Foundation will train the competing villages in the science of watershed development. The 45-day long competition involves ‘Shramadaan’ (voluntary labour) and planning and building watershed management structures that will augment the supply of ground water. Every revenue village in the selected talukas is eligible to participate.
A total of 4,025 villages from 75 talukas of 24 districts took part in the third edition of Satyamev Jayate Water Cup competition in 2018. A total of 22,269 crore litres of potential water storage capacity was created. Over 20,000 people received training in watershed management and water conservation. On average 1, 50,000 people participated in ‘Shramadaan’daily during the course of the competition.
In 2019, the competition will be held in 76 talukas from 24 districts. The last date for submitting the completed entry forms is 31st January, 2019. Paani Foundation extends a warm invitation to all the villages in the selected talukas to complete the entry process and begin their journey towards water-sufficiency and prosperity.
Speaking on the occasion, Honourable Chief Minister Shri. DevendraFadnavis said,“Maharashtra has celebrated the first three years of the Water Cup with great gusto. We will all now be participating in this competition for the fourth year running. The state’s JalyuktShivarAbhiyan’s unique movement of ‘Shramadaan’ is an important step towards freedom from drought. The Satyamev Jayate Water Cup has played a major role inthis movement. I would like to congratulate Aamir Khan, his wife Kiran Rao, Satyajit Bhatkal and the entire team of Paani Foundation and wish them the very best for the fourth edition of the competition. I urge everyone to support this competition unstintingly. Your contribution will make a valuable difference in Maharashtra’s fight to free itself from drought. Villages must participate in the competition in large numbers. This is not just a competition but a people’s movement to make the state drought-free. This is a war for precious water. Forwater literacy and water conservation. A fight for abright future for the generations to come. Not only are my best wishes with you but also the full support of the state government machinery.”
Sharing his views on the fourth edition of the competition, Paani Foundation's founder Aamir Khan said, "Kiran and I are really excited to announce the Satyamev Jayate Water Cup 2019. Like every year, the entire team is ready and eagerly awaitsthe competition. The less than satisfactory rainfall this year has yet again underscored the importance of decentralized watershed management. I appeal to all the villages fro the 76 selected talukas to enthusiastically participate in the competition and attempt to solve the issue of water scarcity in their respective villages.”
Political leaders across the spectrum have also expressed their support for the competition.
Shri Sharad Pawar, President, NCP, said, “We must adopt a policy of implementing watershed management and raising ground water levels inevery village.I am glad that by organizing the Water Cup, Paani Foundation has made an effort to lend a lot of momentum to watershed management work. I urge all villagers and especially the youth to participate wholeheartedly in the Water Cup. Thisprogram does not belong to Paani Foundation alone. It is yours and for your benefit. Take part in large numbers and show that you can all come together and make it a grand success.”
Uddhav Thackeray, National President, Shiv Sena said, “Maharashtra has this year witnessed a drought even more severe than in previous years.December is underway and the major challenge before people is how to manage until the arrival of the rains next year. As their cropping cycles approach, farmers follow the tradition of seeking guidance from the stars. Today, however, when even the stars have failed to guide the farmers about the arrival of the rains, a cine-star, Aamir Khan has arrived to help the farmers plan their watershed in a scientific way. He has been working very hard on this for the last three years. I sincerely thank Aamir Khan for implementing a water literacy program in villages, through the Satyamev Jayate Water Cup. This work is not just his, but ours too. Therefore, I assure you my support, the support of my party-workers and of my villagers in any way that you require. We stand shoulder to shoulder with you in this effort.”
Ashok Chavan, MP, Nanded, Former CM, State Congress Committee President, said, “I congratulate the Paani Foundation team for running the Water Cup for the fourth consecutive year. This is a commendable initiative to bring people together to solve the water crisis in drought-hit Maharashtra. This is a people’s movement and must be nurtured. I request all the villages in selected talukas to participate in this competition. This year the rain has been scarce. The state is witnessing severe drought. The power to create local, decentralized watershed solutions to fight drought, lies in the hands of the people. Participating villages will directly benefit from this work.I wish you the very best and offer my full support to Paani Foundation. I would like especially, to congratulate Aamir Khan and wish participating villages the very best. I offer my full support in making this competition a success.”