Mission Aagaaz, an NGO dealing with environmental issues, has expressed concern over the lack of progress to improve quality of water in a pond at Mannawala village, and sought district administration permission for it to carry out the work.
In a letter to deputy commissioner Rajat Aggarwal, Gurbhej Singh, general secretary, Mission Aagaaz, said that NGO members had visited the village in connection with their efforts to increase the green cover.
"We met progressive farmers Desh Pal Singh and Malkiat Singh Babbu. Babbu has set an example in power-saving by installing an indigenous four KVA photovoltaic rooftop unit producing solar power for his house, without any government subsidy," he said.
He said Babbu apprised the team of the project of improving the village pond started by NREGA three years ago, adding that there had been no improvement in the water body as the daily wages permissible under the NREGA scheme were much below the market rates.
Gurbhej Singh said the members of Mission Aagaaz and other NGOs were willing to perform 'kar sewa' to renovate and deepen the pond. "For this, we need the help of the administration and cooperation of the village sarpanch, patwari, BDPO and other officials for demarcation of the boundaries and a village resolution to permit us to work on the pond," he said.
Singh added that if their efforts succeeded, the NGO could perform 'kar sewa' at other ponds too, thus improving the water bodies of Punjab. "Our mission plans to plant trees around the pond and install cement benches. Thus, this place can be turned into a beautiful picnic spot besides conserving a huge water body," he added.
Aggarwal termed this as a good proposal. "We are examining the feasibility of the proposal considering the fact that the cleaning of such ponds required machines, whereas NREGA workers worked with hands. The proposal would be implemented if deemed viable," he said.