Grundfos India , which has its India head office in Chennai, has gifted the city a valuable legacy. Restoration of a 2.5 acre pond, in association with an NGO , Hand in Hand.
Grundfos India, a global player in pump solutions and water technology has announced the successful restoration of the Injambakkam pond in Chennai. The pond is situated off the ECR road and is spread across 2.5 acres. The firm, which partnered with city based NGO NGO Hand in Hand for the project. The two partners chose to go with a quite announcement, considering the covid situation in Tamil Nadu, and the rest of the country.
The restoration of the water body, will be an important marker in a city that has, in recent years, started slipping back into crisis mode when it comes to water. Thanks to rapid urbanisation and expansion, like many other cities across India, Chennai has also lost a lot of its natural water bodies, leading to issues with both the level, and quality of its groundwater. And leaving residents dependent on external sources, which themselves are subject of the vagaries of the monsoons. Not all attempts at restoration have been a success too, as we had reported earlier on another one.
This restored Injambakkam pond is now a source of clean water that will help improve the water table in the neighborhood, act as storage area for the surplus water and during rains, help channel excess water to the agricultural land nearby, thereby avoiding flooding. The form has also added the now mandatory recreational perks with a walkway (also accessible through a ramp) and solar lights for those who wish to walk around it in the early mornings or late evenings. These facilities can be availed after the lockdown is lifted.
Grundfos, as a local firm , has been well aware of the issues around water in Chennai, and of course, thanks to its business too. It has been working on restoring this pond since 2018 in a phased manner along with local NGOs and the community. In the third phase of restoration, the company has collaborated with Hand in Hand India, a leading nonprofit organization to clear the pond’s bed, strengthen the bund and build fences and plantation around the water body.
Saravanan Paneer Selvam, General Manager, Grundfos India said, “Water is at the core of everything we do at Grundfos. Through such initiatives, we hope to revive water bodies in the city and empower local communities to be involved. Our employees have also been closely involved in this initiative through their volunteering efforts. The idea of having lighting and a walking path was to get the cooperation of the local community in taking ownership and looking after the lake.”
Dr. Kalpana Sankar, Chairperson and Managing Trustee, Hand in Hand India, also added “We at Hand In Hand India are happy to have partnered with Grundfos India, a company that clearly understands water. There are about 1000 people who live in and around this pond and they will be positively impacted by this restoration. Besides establishing a committee to maintain the pond, Grundfos India along with Hand In Hand India has created a three-year plan to work closely with the community members to create a self-sustaining pond through the creation of a herbal and vegetable garden and fishery.” hand in Hand has expanded to have a presence across 16 states in India today, after starting off in Tamil Nadu. The Danish origin Grundfos itself has had an India presence for over 20 years now.
Though a firm with a natural synergy with the work done at Injambakkam, the Grundfos effort certainly deserves emulation by corporates in many cities, when it comes to their CSR efforts. Water body restoration remains a relatively neglected area, that deserves all the support and attention it can get, as a water crisis is never too far away for large swathes of the country today. Chennai seems to have been luckier than most, in getting corporates involved.