Rainwater harvesting units coming up at Qutub Minar
Qutub Minar, the 13th century minaret in Mehrauli, and its surrounding structures will soon act as a reserve for recharging Delhi’s groundwater level.
The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) is constructing four rainwater harvesting units inside the new parking lot of the Qutub complex.
“We have divided the parking lot into four zones and ensuring all the water gets collected at a single point in each of the zones and seeps down through bore wells being dug there,” a senior ASI official said.
The four units together cost approximately Rs 30 lakh and each of the pits will have a capacity of 20 kilolitres. A sewage treatment plant has been constructed behind the new toilet block in the complex.
The water harvesting units are expected to be completed by August-end , after which approximately five other points will be developed inside the garden of the Qutub complex.
“Since monuments generally have large space in and around them, they can be utilised for conserving both rainwater and waste water from public utility facilities,” the official said.
The ASI will also carry out similar water conservation initiatives at other heritage spots such as the Tughlaqabad Fort, Hauz Khas, Mehrauli Archaeological Park and Red Fort.
Speaking on the relevance of using spaces around built heritage for water conservation, heritage activist Vikramjit Singh Rooprai said, “it is important even for the monument itself.”
“The material used to build these monuments is such that if they become completely dry, the mortar will start peeling off and there are chances of them collapsing. Creating water recharging pits will ensure there is enough groundwater for the buildings to soak in from below,” he said.