Holi is just around the corner. The festival, which celebrates the victory of good over evil, kindness over cruelty and meekness over oppression is celebrated across India, and the world.
The true essence of Holi is the colours with which it is celebrated. You can choose any one colour, which you like, and will find it on someone or something on the day Holi is celebrated. Anyone and everyone who has been a part of the festival know that from the puja and the food, to the playing of Holi; all things are extremely colourful!
However, there is a less colourful side to Holi. It involves the massive amount of water that is wasted in playing Holi. Indian tradition has seen colours like Gulaal and Tesu, the traditional sweet of Gujiya and colours being played with water as a part of Holi, since ancient times. In the wake of the current global water crisis, it is a fair call to ask people to play a dry holi or with great effort, reduce water wastage.
In recent times (and no one can deny this fact), the usage and wastage of water have drastically increased on the day of Holi. Millions of litres of water are wasted across cities, towns and villages in a matter of a few hours of celebration. In the face of mass-scale water contamination, eutrophication, declining rainfall and drought, can we really afford to waste so much water in the name of festivity?
In 2013, roughly 15 Million litres of water of water was wasted per hour while playing Holi, in every city. This happened in in the same country where the Maharashtra drought affected 2 Million people in 2012 and people do not have safe drinking water in many places.
In certain parts of India, women and children have to walk for over 2 hours to secure 10-15 litres of drinking water for an entire family; for one day. This wastes time and energy and gets in the way of education. It also exposes these people to danger on an everyday basis.
In the end, the water that they get is still not safe for drinking. Imagine working immensely hard, only to get, store and drink contaminated water, which eventually causes diseases. Diarrhoea, hepatitis, cholera, etc. are just a few diseases among people in India, who have to work extremely hard for water to drink.
So, can we just turn on our taps on the day of Holi and waste and contaminate hundreds of litres of water (personally) to ‘enjoy’ the festival with our loved ones?
If you have been moved to consider a dry Holi and saving money, here’s what can also be done. Gift someone safe drinking water. It might sound crazy, but it is actually possible. You may not be able to reach out to the masses immediately, but start with a small step.
Here are a few products which will help you change and better someone’s life:
Life Straw Personal Water Filter
The Life Straw Personal Water Filter is an amazing product from Vestergaard-Frandsen. It is a personal water filtration system which was awarded Time Magazine “Invention of the Year” for being unique and amazingly simple to use.
Life Straw Personal Water Filter allows one to drink directly from unsafe water sources like ponds, pools, buckets, etc. It kills 99.9% germs and gives pure drinking water in a matter of seconds. It does not feature any moving parts or toxic chemicals. At only 2oz. in weight, it is great to be carried around almost anywhere.
Life Straw Personal Water Filter cleans approximately 1000 liters of water and could be the lifeline of someone ill and poor who really needs pure drinking water, but cannot afford it.
Life Straw Go Water Purifier Bottle
The Life Straw Go Water Purifier Bottle has all the advantages of Life Straw Personal Water Filter, only with a bottle. It can store 650ml of water and purify it with every sip.
Essentially an adventure essential, the Life Straw Go Water Purifier Bottle can be put to sensible gifting use as well.
Thousands of school children across India do not have access to safe drinking water and suffer from diseases as a result. With the Life Straw Go Water Purifier Bottle (which purifies water down to 0.2 microns), they will have access to clean and safe drinking water even after collecting water from an unsafe source. An increase in water, health would directly push an increase in the child’s health. In turn, their education will suffer less.
It is amazing to even think that a simple and inexpensive gift may bring about a massive change in the lives and livelihood of many people. And it all begins with a simple and safe gesture. This Holi, let goodness and kindness win. Let us save water and gift safe drinking water and improve how we live.
Image Credits- oeconline.org
This article was previosuly published on 15th March 2014