If there is magic on this planet, It is contained in water.
Water, they say is life, Almost all life on earth is sustained by it.Water is a strange element of nature. Colourless, odourless, tasteless, yet full of life. There is no joy like your feet in the moving waves of the sea. There is no refreshment like a glass of water after a hard days work. It s not just a source of energy, but also a source of pure joy.
Yet, there are some who don t get to experience it s bounty. There are some, who still walk miles to quench their thirst. Who pay the price of every drop of water with equal drops of their own sweat for a planet that is 70% covered by water, there are places that suffer from draught. There are farmers who wonder if they will receive a harvest this year.
BPCL understand the value of water in the lives of people who strive for it. Whose lives are dependent on its availability alone. These sentiments gave birth to the project Boond . Because when we say that we are a company about fuel, how can we miss out on the ‘fuel of life .
Boond is a Rain Water Harvesting Project undertaken by BPCL with financial support from (Oil Industries Development Board) and executed in collaboration with NGO, Bridge Public Charitable Trust.
Villages suffering from acute shortage of water were identified for this activity. Women from these villages had to walk long distances in th blazing sun on mountainous paths, at times exceeding four kilometers to fetch water. Runoffs triggered by topographical conditions, impervious bedrock, poor water holding capacity of the soil, soil erosion and unrestrained grazing had made the situation critical.
The objective was to turn these villages from Water scarce to water positive . The work mainly comprised of repairs/Deepening of wells, building bunds to capture and store rain water, repairs and leak proofing of existing bunds, building water tanks etc.
All the activities undertaken to draught free the villages were performed with complete participation from the villagers. This imparted a sense of belonging and responsibility towards their own village. Not just that, while working they learnt additional skills like masonry, welding etc. Which they later used as an additional source of income for themselves. This helped check the rampant levels of migration as well.
Another unique aspect of the whole project was the concept of Shram Daan . The villagers performed Shram Daan once a week and for the balance days they were paid minimum wages. Seeing the enthusiasm of the villagers, BPCL also initiated a Employee Volunteering Initiative where in approximately 100 BPCL employees gathered collectively for Shram Daan.
BPCL's passionate efforts in water management have received humble appreciation and recognition from many. Bharat Petroleum won:
- the Excellent Water Efficient Unit Award Beyond the fence at the National Award for Excellence in Water Mangement 2007 conducted by Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) Godrej GBC on 29 30 November 2007 at CII Sohrabji Godrej Green Business Centre, Hyderabad. Bharat petroleum also bagged two more awards in the same event. The most Innovative Case Study and the Most Useful Presentation(Which was voted by audience).
- Bharat Petroleum ‘WON’ the prestigious ‘Asian CSR Award 2008’ for project ‘Boond- III’ in the Environmental Excellence Category.
- The coveted Award was received by our C&MD , Mr. Ashok Sinha, in Singapore on 21st Nov 2008 at the hands of Dr. Noelen Heyzer, Under Secretary General of UN and Executive Secretary of ESCAP. The Awards were conducted by the prestigious Asian Institute of Management with co-sponsorship from Intel.
- Chairman in his acceptance speech has acknowledged the voluntary contribution made by employees towards the overall success of this project.
Encouraged by the response at the 9 villages, BPCL is now working on 5 more villages, Dhenganmal, Takichiwadi and Rikamwadi. This journey would continue and BPCL would touch the lives of as many people as possible with this amazing entity of life, WATER.