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Shivakumar: The man perhaps with a solution to India's water crisis

Shivakumar, known as the 'water man' for all the right reasons, is on the mission to ensure that no house remains deprived even of a single drop of water. 

T Raghavan T Raghavan
Chennai Published on: June 18, 2019 17:57 IST
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Shivakumar, the 'water' man

Every year during the summer season, India appears to be on the verge of a water crisis. The fast-growing metropolis of Bengaluru, India’s IT capital, is no exception to suffering the water woes.

But here is a man who has vowed to fight back.

Shivakumar, known as the 'water man' for all the right reasons, is on the mission to ensure that no house remains deprived even of a single drop of water. 

A senior scientist at the Karnataka State Council of Science and Technology (KSCST) at Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Shivakumar is often referred to as the real hero of rainwater harvesting.

A vociferous proponent of RWH, Shivakumar does not have a Cauvery water connection in his home and he has been relying entirely on collected rainwater to serve all his family’s needs for over two decades. 

Shivakumar has not paid the corporation for water in the past 24 years, as he is self-sufficient. He experimented it successfully when he built his house "Saurabha" in 1995 in Vijayanagara area of Bengaluru city. His house literally catches every drop of water.

Shivkumar told India TV that he did a lot of research before putting his plans into action apart from studying the water bills of residents of the locality. He began with mapping the data of rainfall of last 100 years in Bengaluru.

He said he was surprised to discover that as per the data, there was more than enough rainfall in the city, even in the worst monsoon-deficient years.

The only catch was that while it rained for about 60-70 days in a year, the water had to last for 365 days. He decided to store the water which can be used in between the two seasons of rains.

First, Shivakumar built a roof tank with a 5,000-litre capacity. On the ground floor, he built another 5,000-litre capacity tank, which catches most of the rainwater. 

On his portico, he built the biggest tank of 25,000-litre capacity. And then over his garage two-and-a-half feet above ground level, he built another 10,000-litre tank. 

Each tank has a pop-up filter, which Shivakumar has a patent for. 

It is marketed as the Rain Tap Pop-up filter in Gujarat. 

This filter removes all the mud, muck and other particles from rainwater. The overflow from the tank goes to the portico tank, which ultimately sends it to the garage tank. 

The garage tank is the only tank that uses electricity to pump water to the roof tank. The entire house runs on the ground floor tank, which has a capacity of 5,000 litres, whereas the portico and garage tanks serve as storage tanks for water when there is a gap in rainfall. 

He said he also ensures appliances like washing machine reuse waste water.

Shivakumar has trained several architects and contractors to integrate such water systems in new constructions.

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