With an objective of making Maharashtra drought-free, the Sakal Media Group’s Delivering Change Foundation launched the ‘Water for All’ lab, a one-of-its-kind initiative. As the focus was on drawing implementable solutions, the lab comprised participants from all sections of the society i.e. the Government of Maharashtra, Business, Academia and NGO sector. Each section brought with it a different perspective and methodology to address issues in the water sector.
The Water Lab had collaborators like Water Conservation Department, Government of Maharashtra, in collaboration with PEMANDU, India Backbone Implementation Network, Planning Commission, Government of India and Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Contemporary Studies.
Stakeholder syndication meetings with policy-makers and experts in tandem with the Lab worked to understand ‘ hurdles in policy implementation’, pubic private participation opportunities and to get validation on solutions to various priority level issues identified and analyzed during the Lab. Finally, the 6-week lab came up with 32 identifiable solutions, aiming to make the state of Maharashtra drought-free for the next five years.
The efforts were also lauded by the Government of Maharashtra representatives. Speaking at the valedictory function of the water lab, V Giriraj, Principal Secretary, Water Conservation said that the outcome of the water lab was like a Detailed Project Report (DPR) of the government ready for implementation.
In his message to the participants, Abhijit Pawar, Managing Director, Sakal Media Group said that the outcome of the ‘Water for All’ lab would be shared with the people of Maharashtra and all political parties. Sakal Media Group, as the ambassador of change aims to create awareness through the media, have public engagement and grass-root level connect to take these efforts further.