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Water Tradition And Heritage Of Rajasthan With Neeraj Doshi

Water Tradition And Heritage Of Rajasthan With Neeraj Doshi

Aerial view of Jaisalmer Gadsisar lake, the golden city fort of Rajasthan, India

Anuradha – Namaste! Today now we have with us Neeraj Doshi Ji. He’s the founding father of a really fascinating initiative in Jaipur known as Heritage water walks. I’ve at all times mentioned that if India has to deliver again its tradition it has to deliver again the water tradition, respecting water or not likely promoting water however actually revering water as a result of that’s the base of our life. With out water, none of us might be alive. Who higher than Neeraj can inform us the story of the connection with water in India, extra importantly, he’s primarily based out of Jaipur, one of many driest states and one of the crucial developed states in terms of conservation and storage of water. So Neeraj is welcome to the detours.

Neeraj – Thanks Anuradha Ji for being me in detours and I’m glad to attach with audiences the world over to share the story of water in Rajasthan. What makes this very distinctive is the entire concept that prompted me to begin this water heritage walks to share the knowledge of water.

Anuradha – Let’s begin speaking about water and Rajasthan. What’s the relationship of water in Rajasthan as a result of we discover stunning examples of storing and conserving water throughout the state?

Neeraj – Proper, to start with, we can’t survive with out water and Rajasthan doesn’t have it. The connection is fairly intense. The truth that it’s inhabited is the primary marvel of the world, depart the remaining 6 since you can’t survive with out water. Rajasthan has a really distinctive standing in that.

There are 25 deserts on the planet and Rajasthan isn’t as massive because the Thar desert that now we have. 75% of Rajasthan is the Thar desert and a few a part of this desert is in Pakistan. So the Thar desert is 200,000 sq km. The largest desert is in Africa – the Sahara desert with an space of 9,200,000 sq km. Now, what units the Thar desert other than all of the deserts or drier locations on the planet that aren’t inhabited naturally is the individuals dwelling contained in the desert. Sahara has a inhabitants density of 1 individual per sq km.

Versus that, Thar has 143 per individual sq km, which is 140 instances greater than individuals dwelling within the desert, simply to distinction individuals dwelling in Arizona or the USA. The best way life developed in Rajasthan must be linked to water as every part is linked to water. In the event you look a bit bit deep into water or for those who sip via layers of tradition over right here ultimately you will notice the core of it’s water.

Administration or Water Tradition

Anuradha – The truth that so many individuals are in a position to inhabit a desert will need to have come from the truth that they may handle water.

Neeraj – Administration is one side. Administration turning into part of your life is one other factor, the place you don’t really feel like you’re making any effort. For example, all people chips in to make the effectively. So that you don’t exit of your solution to do work. You could have developed your life round it by making each single process of managing water a customized or custom. As you’re doing it water is conserved, water is saved, and water is at all times there.

For instance, if there’s dying, marriage, childbirth, or any completely satisfied or unhappy event they vow to make a water physique within the title of their deceased mom or father or new child son or grandson. There isn’t a exhausting work or further work. Once you reside like this it doesn’t grow to be an effort, it turns into a ravishing factor. Throughout my childhood days, my grandmother would get half a bucket of water for bathing and she or he would say if you’d like extra you possibly can fetch it your self. Nobody else will do exhausting be just right for you. Now, this was a really exhausting lesson and to me, I by no means felt there was water shortage.

Anuradha – I’m studying Devi Bhagwat Purana and one of many punya or deserves that it talks about is constructing a water physique. It brings forth the entire water philosophy of India, however then it says greater benefit comes from sustaining the present water physique. You don’t have to construct them however have to keep up them additionally.

Neeraj – That jogs my memory – Mahabharata is eighteen days of conflict and there are 18 books of Mahabharata. The thirteenth  guide is Anushasana Parva. It has a dialog that Bhishma Pitamaha had on his deathbed with Yudhishthira. Yudhisthira was assuming the throne, earlier than that Vishpitama needed to offer his complete knowledge to the approaching king. Yudhishthira asks Bhishma what’s the greatest deed of all. One deed is giving water to the thirsty whether or not it’s a human being, tree, or animal. By doing that you may bypass 60,000 births. By simply doing a mere act of providing water to the thirsty you bypass 60,000 births of distress.

Anuradha – This brings me to the tradition of piyaus (public ghada) that we hold particularly in the summertime months. Touring in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, or Uttar Pradesh, I see ladies sitting with the pot serving water to all people. They don’t ask who you’re from the place you’re coming from, if you’re thirsty, simply have water. They do it with an perspective of gratitude. Then I am going to the airport to take a flight, and there you will have a price ticket of  50 rs for a 250 ml or 500 ml water bottle. You simply see the distinction the place somebody is serving water and feeling gratitude in the direction of you and right here persons are not prepared to offer you a sip of water except you pay. I’ve at all times mentioned that at any time when India comes again to its previous glory it will likely be after we will begin respecting and cease promoting water.

Several types of water our bodies

Anuradha – Can you’re taking us via conservation applied sciences of water our bodies or previous engineering round them? And sorts of water our bodies which can be there.

Neeraj – There are a lot of distinct architectural types of water our bodies. There are water our bodies which can be related however they’ve completely different names relying on the world or area we’re in. Rajasthan might be divided into 4 areas. Shekhawati, Marwar, Mewar, Dundhar, and yet one more Hadoti (a bit bit extra gifted by way of water as in comparison with different areas due to Chambal). Chambal is just one perennial river flowing via Rajasthan.

Lovely Sethani ka Johara in Churu of Shekhawati

There are a lot of our bodies, one is Kuan (wells) which you dig a gap into the earth until you attain the bottom despair level which has pure water. Then there are lakes and ponds. Rajasthan has 3000 thousand water our bodies, all of that are man-made. If the title of a city, metropolis, or village ends with sar that place is understood after the water physique as a result of sar means Sarovar. Alsisar, Padamasar, Lunkaransar – all bought names from the water physique. That’s the final respect that I recognized the water physique in my place.

Coming to the sorts of water our bodies now we have. There’s one water physique that you may’t discover wherever else in India that’s Kui (feminine model of Kuan). These are depending on the geology and topography of the place. Kui you can see largely within the Shekhawati area. They’re depending on one thing which may be very distinctive which is called Rejhani Pani. There are 3 sorts of water that we determine in Rajasthan – one is Palarpani which is water from heaven (rains), the second is Patalpani which is underground water(previous water) and the third one is Rejhani Pani neither right here nor there, that’s collected from humidity.

Harlalka Well at Mandawa
Harlalka Effectively at Mandawa in Shekhawati

In sure areas of Shekhawati, there’s a layer of gypsum rocks passing via a few ft under the earth, and on high of it, you will have sand. So when waterfalls on this area it’s not in a position to persist underground. It spreads into the sand and this water isn’t evaporated, it’s not in a position to go down deep. Individuals have been ready to determine find out how to withdraw this water for consumption functions. They’ve created perpendicular cylindrical wells with a little or no diameter (4-5ft diameter).

It’s vertical happening about 40-50 ft down. In such a mechanism a low-pressure sort of zone is created and no matter water resides within the sand instantly travels via the low-pressure zone ultimately, the humidity will convert into freshwater so that individuals can withdraw 10-12 buckets of water. Kuin is a slim form of effectively 40-50 ft down the earth relying on the kind of area.

Kuin could also be non-public or public. They usually belong to a selected household, area, or caste. You’ll be able to have a private Kuin in a public space however you don’t personal it. You’ll be able to solely withdraw it. Generally individuals have Kuin of their private residence which is clearly their non-public Kuin. They aren’t linked to one another however they’re linked to the world. There’s a gypsum layer and water under it. Kuin might be modified too. These water our bodies have a better high quality of water as a result of water goes via a few layers of sand to ooze into the effectively. It’s filtered water already.

Anuradha – This jogged my memory of an extended collection of wells in Burhanpur. They’re linked to one another and provide spring water and rainwater to the entire metropolis & area. These wells look similar to Kuin however the know-how is completely different because the topography is completely different.

Neeraj –  Type of germination has occurred that know-how is coming from one finish to a different. In Nahargarh fort water stroll individuals see two Aqueducts. This Know-how was developed by Romans within the first century AD. This know-how got here to India by way of the Center East and it was centralized in Nahargarh fort. 

The structure of water our bodies

Anuradha – Now we have stunning step-wells within the western a part of India that’s Rajasthan, Gujarat. They’re otherwise embellished. They showcase the native taste of embellishment. I’ll ask about Rajasthan and Gujarat Bawdi particularly referred to as Chand Baori, Rani ki Vav. Do now we have any thought how they had been constructed? They go many ranges under the earth and so they have continued to remain 800-900 years standing sturdy. Why have they got sideways steps?

Chand Baori at Abhaneri - Water Culture of Rajasthan
Chand Baori at Abhaneri

Neeraj – You’ll be able to’t go straight down, it is extremely deep down. It is going to be tough by way of individuals strolling down focus and coordination. In the event you go down and step sideways, orientation doesn’t change. That’s the one approach that you may have steps smaller. In the event you go straight down you’ll have greater steps. Negotiating the depth of the stepwell, in addition to determining a greater solution to step down. That is why a number of individuals can entry the water physique similtaneously effectively as they create a ravishing view.

Water Tradition of Rajasthan

Anuradha – How is water mirrored within the tradition of Rajasthan?

Neeraj – Tradition is life-style, textiles, traditions, and meals. All the things is rooted in water. For us, water is a celebration. In Pushkar, every part is round water be it inns, Dharamshala, or the schooling system. All festivals and festivals occur close to the water physique. Now now we have hidden our water in partitions. We don’t see water, as water is now not a dwelling factor for us, it’s wanted. We want water to outlive. It’s current in our lives because it was earlier than. That is one transition that occurred from conventional water tradition to trendy tradition.

lehariya Saris - water culture on fabric
The Lehariya Saris – Should Purchase in Jaipur

Water coming to the faucet has diminished the wrestle of ladies. All the things has its personal advantages. Now coming to the cultural points. Leheriya is a really particular tie and dye approach that originated in Rajasthan. Lehriya means wave-like. It exhibits flowing water and in Rajasthan, there isn’t a flowing water. So it’s a request to God that water begins to circulation in our area and begins creating waves. It’s worn in the course of the onset of monsoons and on Teej.

Anuradha –  It replicates the flowing water in textile and expects God to have a look at it and make water circulation in your land.

Neeraj – Think about hundreds of ladies sporting Leheriya. It may well provide the phantasm of flowing water. That’s one side and appears stunning. There’s additionally headgear for males referred to as Safa product of Lehriya and that is often worn on Teej and through monsoons. It is a tie and dye approach.

Aerial view of Jaisalmer Gadsisar lake, the golden city fort of Rajasthan, India
Aerial view of Jaisalmer Gadsisar lake, the golden metropolis fort of Rajasthan

There are two completely different dance kinds one is Bhavai (a number of pots are on the top) and Chari (a number of ladies have one pot). These pots are product of terracotta in Bhavai and copper pots in Chari. Copper pots are referred to as Chari within the native language. They’re attempting to point out their journey from residence to fetch water. Why these a number of pots? Generally ladies don’t have time and water assets are distant so you possibly can’t take a number of turns.

So ladies will stability a number of pots on their heads, and after a few tries, they grow to be masters in balancing and may get all of the water they want in a single go. Why these dance kinds? Think about a lady strolling down the road of a village carrying a number of pots on high of their head. She isn’t in a position to see down or see pebbles or sharp objects. She has to really feel down and has to stroll very fastidiously. This complete factor is reworked into dance kinds that grow to be very sensuous and really stunning.

Anuradha – I’ve seen this dance in lots of cultural festivals however I by no means may relate to the actual fact that is really a replication of water assortment achieved by ladies of Rajasthan each day.

Neeraj – That is coming out of your day by day rituals. Then now we have music. Panihari music the place Panihari is the lady who goes to fetch water. All the ladies of the neighborhood collect collectively to fetch water. On their journey they’ll share their considerations, frustration of the day, and all the problems, making themselves lighter by speaking. They’re sporting anklets and whereas strolling the sound of anklets is coming.  All these are transformed into music type.

See Also

Anuradha – I’ve heard this music, I’ve recorded this music however I couldn’t hook up with the truth that it’s a bunch of ladies going each day to fetch water and creating music out of it.

Neeraj – This has come out of it. There’s a repeated story sung by completely different music kinds a few lady who has gone to fetch water after which she notices there’s a horseman, who’s thirsty he requests the lady for water. She doesn’t know that this similar fellow is her fiancee. She hasn’t seen her fiancee. Again residence, she sees the identical man sitting over there. Now there’s narration specific to his topic capsulated in Panihari music.

Now comes innovation the place cleansing utensils with mud or sand. It is a form of evolution of how the system was. Utensils had been cleaned with charcoal ash. One, there isn’t a water. Second, it is extremely scientific and clear. Charcoal ash is pure carbon. Carbon has the best porosity. You unfold charcoal ash over the plate and it’ll soak up oil or ghee instantly after which wipe out with a clear fabric. That is waterless cleansing.

Why charcoal cleansing and the place will we use charcoal in trendy dwelling? One within the water filter, the carbon candle within the filter attracts all of the dust and impurities. Additional down we use it in our toothpaste and face wash.  Carbon is used to soak up dust and filth which is on our faces. People who find themselves utilizing it could not know the scientific cause however it’s a very clear solution to clear.

Heritage water walks in Jaipur

Anuradha – Inform us about heritage walks performed in two forts in Jaipur by you. What are the important thing highlights of those walks?

Neeraj – One is Nahargarh fort and the second is Amer Palace water stroll.

Someplace in 2014, I moved again to Jaipur from the USA. I began dwelling in Jaipur and began my firm known as Rainwater Analysis and innovation in water for the institutional degree water administration. I’m a desert individual and the previous 16  generations lived in deserts and perished within the desert as effectively. After I visited the Nahargarh water system and the Amer water system they collected water on the high of the hill. It’s mind-blowing. I began exploring and I noticed this calls for a sure form of consideration that hasn’t gotten but.

Rajasthan Water Tradition – No water, no tradition, no civilization!

Rajasthan is essentially the most visited vacationer vacation spot. What makes it distinctive? Water makes it distinctive, if there was no water then there isn’t a tradition, no civilization, and no Rajasthan. There are three parts to the stroll. It’s a two-hour stroll and travels to 300 previous water buildings. Amer is much older than Nahargarh when Jaipur was beneath development, it was constructed to guard Jaipur. Constructing a fort which is for the military, you must present a water system, you possibly can’t fetch water each day. These walks inform the story of the king who designed this, inform the story of the individuals who had been dwelling on this, and the know-how of water methods. There are three parts to those walks.

First heritage of Rajasthan, technological heritage, and cultural heritage. My concern was individuals ought to come and revel in and may relate to the very core a part of Rajasthan. A king wouldn’t survive with out water so cultural heritage would deliver all these points. Cultural heritage brings this all points similar to who we’re and design. Know-how heritage brings how these had been constructed and what are their distinctive points.

Viewers suggestions on Water Tradition

Anuradha – Inform us about one or two issues that the viewers finds most fascinating.

Neeraj – It’s inconceivable as a result of I’ve been overwhelmed by the responses of the viewers. They love the tales, they join with the tales and love the truth that water connects us all.

Anuradha – Do you see a way of appreciation for attending to water after the stroll?

Neeraj – Undoubtedly, individuals in India are usually conscious however individuals coming from worldwide see water in a special gentle. They’re way more appreciative not from the binary to preserve extra water however there are extra points to the water. For example, Amer is constructed for residents, and the king will reside in a palace so the utility is completely different. Nahargarh fort has a special utility and water system. Rajasthan has many hill forts and all have water conservation relying on the world.

View from Jaleb Chowk – Amer Fort

Jaipur Heritage Water Walks

Anuradha – Anyone visiting Jaipur should hook up with Neeraj for heritage water walks. What are different fascinating water-specific areas in India? Mandu is an enormous case examine for water conservation. Kanheri caves in Mumbai the place water was conserved fantastically. All of the hill forts have a water mechanism as a result of the military received’t survive with out water.  However some other areas that you really want individuals otherwise you need to go and discover from a water perspective.

Neeraj – Delhi is one metropolis that has super water richness. We live traditions and by way of dwelling traditions, a number of actions similar to day by day chores and day by day points have a water side as the bottom of it.

Discover your personal water tradition heritage in backyards

Anuradha – I reside in Panaji which is a small island metropolis surrounded by two rivers on two sides and the Arabian Sea on the third aspect. Although the origin of this metropolis is in spring. The unique a part of town comes across the water spring that flows down the hill. Even when it’s the similar little place surrounded by water throughout. It’s completely fascinating. I completely agree with you that individuals wherever they’re dwelling whether or not metropolis, city or village they should begin exploring their very own water heritage. Hopefully, share with us.

Neeraj – That is very fascinating by way of the tourism perspective which India has to supply. This was one of many causes I used to be invited by the federal government of Rajasthan to develop these walks. All different states have extra to supply though Rajasthan is a desert. 

Anuradha – Thanks for sharing your immense data of water with us.

This put up has been transcribed by Pallavi Thakur as a part of the IndiTales Internship Program.

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