Bangalore seems to be facing a near constant water crisis, with limited water resources failing to match the requirements of an ever expanding city. Yet, it is also Bangalore that has been taking the lion's share of water resources of Karnataka for years. When water policy is framed it is often the city’s interests that are considered primary - with the rest of the state having to make do with what is left. In recent years there has been increasing interest and conversations around city folks visiting water facilities around the state that bring water to Bangalore. While this is a good start to get citizens to begin caring for water resources around them, it is important to remember that there are thousands of lakes and tanks around Karnataka that mean a lot to people who live around them. Most of these water bodies can be found in and around villages and small towns and their health is deeply connected to the health of people living close to them.
After many years of poor rains, Karnataka received abundant rainfall in 2017. This served as an incentive for us to get out of the city and experience water bodies on the outskirts of Bangalore - to not only get a better understanding of how Bangalore gets its water but to also see what changes good rainfall brings to the land and the people of the state. It is a massive exercise to conduct a thorough documentation of water bodies and communities around them in Karnataka so we would like to imagine this as an on-going project. For our first visit, we focused on the water bodies themselves and their immense beauty. The following set of pictures and captions is a first edition of what we hope will be many water stories from Karnataka and elsewhere.
Babitha George, Kevin Shane and Romit Raj are working on this project along with their chief adventurer and guide Tanveer. Babitha, Kevin and Romit work for Quicksand, a design research studio based in Delhi, Bangalore and Goa.