Press Release

Celebrating the brilliance of Water Crusaders

Water Digest organised the 14th Water Digest Water Awards, 2020, in partnership with UNESCO on a virtual platform on December 17, 2020.

The event was supported by the Department of Water Resources, River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation, Ministry of Jal Shakti, Government of India, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs and AMRUT. The Delhi Jal Board, NSF International and Kwality Shutters were associate partners for the event. The event was presided over by the Chief Guest Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, Hon’ble Minister for Jal Shakti, Government of India.

Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, Hon’ble Minister for Jal Shakti, Government of India

 

Shri Rattan Lal Kataria, Hon’ble Minister of State, Ministry of Jal Shakti, Government of India

 

LtoR- Shri U.P. Singh, Hon’ble Secretary, Ministry of Jal Shakti, Mr. Eric Falt, Director and UNESCO Representative to Bhutan, Bangladesh, India, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Shri Rajiv Ranjan Mishra, IAS, Director General, National Mission for Clean Ganga, Mr. A.B. Pandya, Secretary-General, ICID and Editor-in-Chief, Water Digest, Ms. Anupama Madhok, Editor & Director, Water Digest, and Mr. Umesh Kumar Sharma, Director, Water Digest.

The ceremony also witnessed the august participation of Shri Rattan Lal Kataria, Hon’ble Minister of State, Ministry of Jal Shakti, Shri U.P. Singh, Hon’ble Secretary, Ministry of Jal Shakti, Shri Rajiv Ranjan Mishra, IAS, Director General, National Mission for Clean Ganga, Mr Eric Falt, Director and UNESCO Representative to Bhutan, Bangladesh, India, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Mr A.B. Pandya, Secretary-General, ICID and Editor-in-Chief, Water Digest, Ms Anupama Madhok, Editor & Director, Water Digest and Mr Umesh Kumar Sharma, Director, Water Digest. The event also boasted of an esteemed jury panel. The panel consisted of illustrious personalities like Mr. Guy Broucke, Programme Specialist and Chief of Section – Natural Sciences, UNESCO, Dr. K.M. Chacko, Director, Shriram Institute for Industrial Research, Mr. Anshuman, Associate Director, Water Resources Division, TERI, Mr. Arumugum Kalimuthu, Programme Director, WASH Institute, Mr. R.S. Tyagi, Former Member Water Supply, Delhi Jal Board, Shri R.K. Gupta, Former CMD, WAPCOS Limited, and Dr. Pawan Labhasetwar, Scientist and Head Water Technology & Management Division, CSIR- NEERI Delhi Zone Laboratory.

Ms Anupama Madhok, Editor & Director

Ms Anupama Madhok, Director and Editor, Water Digest, in her opening speech, welcomed the audience and prestigious luminaries. She reminisced about the 14-year long journey of Water Digest and threw light on the changes and innovation that the Indian water sector has witnessed over these years. She concluded her address by expressing her gratitude towards the viewers and readers of Water Digest, who helped the magazine reach pinnacles of success.

Mr A.B. Pandya, Editor-in-Chief of Water Digest and Secretary General-ICID

The Editor-in-Chief of Water Digest and Secretary General-ICID, Mr A.B. Pandya thanked all jury members for their efforts in selecting the winners in all categories. Further, he talked about the Water awards and the importance of recognising the individuals and entities working towards water conservation and management. He concluded his address by thanking all the participants and guests for making the event a grand success.

Mr Eric Falt, Director and UNESCO Representative to Bhutan, Bangladesh, India, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka

Meanwhile, Mr Eric Falt, Director and UNESCO Representative to Bhutan, Bangladesh, India, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka congratulated Water Digest for organising Water Awards event during the pandemic and threw light on the need to recognise the efforts of every individual to encourage them to do more work in the sector. He shared that UNESCO has also been taking up initiatives to facilitate capacity building programmes and hosting mega conferences on the water while also organising online classes with special cartoon videos for school children in partnership with NGOs and United School Organisations.

Shri Rajiv Ranjan Mishra, IAS, Director General, National Mission for Clean Ganga

Talking about the initiatives by Namami Gange, Mr Rajiv Ranjan Mishra IAS, Director General, National Mission for Clean Ganga focussed on how rejuvenation of river bodies and conservation of water is intrinsically linked with each other. He also shared the policy brief developed out of the PAVITRA GANGA project (a joint India-EU project, that is jointly led by TERI, New Delhi and VITO, Belgium) to promote a wide-scale wastewater reuse and resources recovery systems in India.

Shri U.P. Singh, Hon’ble Secretary, Ministry of Jal Shakti, Government of India

Shri U. P. Singh Hon’ble Secretary, Ministry of Jal Shakti addressed the audience by sharing his views on the importance of water for the sustenance of life on earth. He shed light on the careless wastage of water and the pioneering efforts carried out by various organisations and individuals to save and conserve water. He also lauded the impressive work that Water Digest has done over the years and how it has evolved to be a mouthpiece of the water industry.

Highlighting the importance of saving and conserving water, Shri Rattan Lal Kataria, Hon’ble Minister of State, Ministry of Jal Shakti, Government of India appreciated the Government for its endeavours towards water management and accentuated his point with the example of a recently launched scheme, ‘Atal Mission Yojana’, an Rs. 6000 crore scheme launched by the Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi. He also lauded other initiatives carried out by the Government, like Jal Jeevan Mission, an Rs. 3, 60,000 crore scheme named ‘HAR GHAR NAL SE JAL’ and ‘Catch The Rain’ campaign to conserve every drop of water for a water-secure future.

The Chief Guest of the event, Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, Hon’ble Minister for Jal Shakti, Government of India in his address, talked about Water Digest’s 14-year long journey towards recognising the efforts of every organisation and individuals in endeavours like Water Harvesting, Water Conservation and Reuse & Recycle. He congratulated all the winners and emphasised on the need to reward the good work being carried out in the water sector. While concluding his address, he urged everyone to conserve and save water as it is at the very core of life.

LtoR- Mr. Guy Broucke, Programme Specialist and Chief of Section – Natural Sciences, UNESCO, Shri R.K. Gupta, Former CMD, WAPCOS Limited, Dr. K.M. Chacko, Director, Shriram Institute for Industrial Research, Mr. R.S. Tyagi, Former Member Water Supply, Delhi Jal Board, Mr. Anshuman, Associate Director, Water Resources Division, TERI, Dr. Pawan Labhasetwar, Scientist and Head Water Technology & Management Division, CSIR- NEERI Delhi Zone Laboratory and Mr. Arumugum Kalimuthu, Programme Director, WASH Institute.

The event was also available for live streaming on the official Facebook pages of The Water Digest, Department of Water Resources, River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation, Ministry of Jal Shakti, National Water Mission and National Mission for Clean Ganga.

The Formal Launch of This Policy Brief Titled “Mainstreaming Governance on Wastewater Treatment, Water Reuse and Resource Recovery: Learnings From India and The European Union” Jointly Led By TERI (N. Delhi) And VITO (Belgium).

A Policy Brief titled “Mainstreaming Governance on Wastewater Treatment, Water Reuse and Resource Recovery: Learnings from India and the European Union” Jointly Led By TERI (N. Delhi) And VITO (Belgium), was launched by Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, Hon’ble Minister for Jal Shakti, Government of India, during the ceremony to promote a wide-scale wastewater reuse and resources recovery systems in India.

The awards were presented to over 45 different category winners including various sectors like Government, Private, NGO’s, School, college, RWAs, individuals and many more. This year, the awards witnessed a significant competition amongst the public and private players.

The ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ was awarded to Shri R.K. Gupta, Former CMD, WAPCOS Limited for his exceptional work in the field. The West Bengal Accelerated Development of Minor Irrigation Project won the award for ‘Best Water Efficient Project– Government’ while Kolhapur Airport was victorious in the Best Water Management – Airport category. Municipal Corporation of Thane, Surat and Vadodara were also awarded in different categories. The two biggest awards; Made In India – Best Water Company (Govt. Sector) was bagged by WAPCOS Limited and Made In India – Best Water Company (Private Sector) was bagged by Larsen & Toubro Limited.

The award show also lauded the tireless efforts of individuals who are setting benchmarks in the water sector for others to follow. This year, The Water Digest Water Awards introduced two new awards under the individual category to recognize the efforts and contributions by women and young professionals in the water sector. These categories were named as ‘Young Water Professional Award’ and ‘Women Contributor in the Water Sector.’

Mr K.K. Gupta, Former Mayor, and Brand Ambassador, Swachh Rajasthan was awarded in the former category for his exemplary work in water management by community involvement.

The event received an overwhelming response from both the audience and participants. The competition was fierce, and it was tough for the jury to decide on the winners.

Celebrity and Actress, Ms. Mandira Bedi hosted the event

We humbly accept that every single entity in this sector works to their full potential, catering optimum usage and conservation of water. When we started 14 years ago, we were not sure of the path we were treading. However, the love and support received from the audience have made us a force to reckon with. We strive to give our best to the industry in the future too. The event received over 14 lakh impressions and was streamed live across the globe.

We would like to conclude on a poetic note by quoting a famous distinction from Robert Frost’s poem, Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening: “…The woods are lovely, dark and deep, but I have promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep, And miles to go before I sleep.”

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