BAKDIL launches the Springshed Based Watershed Development Programme at Sakaboldamgre on Thursday in presence of the Chief Guest, Shri Saleng A Sangma, Local MLA Gambegre Constituency and the Chairman of the State Government Programme Implementation and Monitoring Committee and the Guests of Honour, Rt. Rev. Andrew R Marak, Bishop of Tura, Fr. John Kelamkhuzackal, Parish Priest, Somonpara Parish, Shri Manoranjan R Marak, BDO, Gambegre Block, Shri Ram Singh, IAS, DC West Garo Hills, Shri Madras Dkhar, DDM Nabard and Fr. Sunny, Director BAKDIL NGO.

This Springshed Based Watershed Development Programme is the three-year project funded by NABARD at the expense of INR 54,62,085. The project aims to conserve and sustain the groundwater as well as soil alleviating poverty through the creation of employment, enhancing agriculture production, productivity and livelihood of the people in the dryland regions.

The proposed project supports 300 Ha watershed area which will be divided into its respective spring shed.

Fr. Sunny Mavelil briefed the project plans and requested the village people to show support and take benefit of the project. While giving speech he said that BAKDIL is not the organisation that will support only with money and guidance but BAKDIL wants people’s cooperation, dedication and change in the area.

He also motivates the people by sharing the example of Samanda ITDP project, in which people are being able to sell 1 tonne of mango fruits after four years of project implementation. he also said that the local village people will be provided with three months training in masonry and they will be employed for constructing the watershed.

Speaking to the public, Shri Saleng A Sangma said, “the Government is implementing many kinds of schemes and project and some indigenous people are benefiting from it. However, if there is no will and interest in the people then these projects are of no use”. He thanked the NABARD and BAKDIL for coming up with such projects that will cause a revival of the dying springs, “we can see many trees and forests in our area but rivers and springs are drying up gradually”.

He also said that the rubber plantation destroys the underground water as the roots of the rubber plant goes deep up to 100 metres and the tree requires at least 6 litres of water in a day. He requested the NABARD officer to find alternate for rubber plantation and discourage rubber plantation.

DDM NABARD, Shri Madras Dkhar said that we need to rejuvenate the dying springs which we found out that during summer the villagers are suffering from scarcity of water. He urges the village people to show interest and cooperate while implementing the project to make it one of the most successful projects of NABARD.

Deputy Commissioner, West Garo Hills, Shri Ram Singh encourages the village people to practice rainwater harvesting saying this harvested rain water can be kept for months and this will give alternate ways of water supply during dry days. He also shares ideas of using bamboos and locally available materials for rainwater harvesting.

The launching program was successful despite heavy downpour and protocols for COVID-19 have been followed by maintaining social distancing and wearing of masks.