About Vikrant Tongad
Vikrant Tongad is a self-trained and passionate water conservationist based in Greater Noida (Uttar Pradesh). He started working on various ecological issues in year 2010 during his college days itself. His main concern at that time, and even now, has been the fast receding groundwater table of Noida and Gr. Noida as reflected in various Central Ground Water Authority (CGWA) reports and news articles. He observed, over the years, that this crisis is largely man-made.
Initially, he noticed a significant amount of water wastage through domestic borewells. In his own village, Kheri-Bhanauta, greater noida he saw that out of total 1000 households, over 50% were using borewells day in and day out, without realizing that this resource is exhaustible. Vikrant was only 20-years-old when he firstformed a team of children and youngsters to sensitize villagers on the issue. He also took out a “water rally” in his own village and nearby areas for this purpose. After the rally, a lot of people, mainly youth, joined his ‘save water’ campaign.
Further during the campaign in year 2012-13, he realized that a huge amount of groundwater is pumped out by real-estate developers to create basements for multi-storey buildings, and poured down the drain. In fact, as per one estimate, the amount of water thus wasted in just one day in Noida and Gr. Noida is equal to water used by the locals of that area in an entire year .
Vikrant approached many govt. departments and courts to stop this wastage. Finally, his efforts bore result and groundwater extraction for construction work was banned in Noida and Gr.Noida in January 2013. Several million liters of groundwater have since been saved and gradually, over 500 real estate sitedevelopers switched to using treated water from Sewage Treatment Plants (STPs) for construction work. Additionally, the local authorities earned revenue in crores by selling this treated water. This was the first big “water victory” for Vikrant.
Later that year, in July 2013, he established his NGO SAFE with few other socially-conscious friends. The aim was to take environmental issues forward in a professional and organized way.
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Contact Vikrant –
Social Action For Forest & Environment
T-16, Senior Citizen Home Complex , Sector Pi-1,
Near Yatharth Hospital , Gr.Noida ,201310 , UP ,India