9th Mile, Khanapara, Ri-Bhoi, September 14, 2022: In honour and recognition of his pioneering community-based work on rejuvenation of rivers and waterbodies of Rajasthan, the USTM Missionary Award has been presented here today to Dr Rajendra Singh, a water conservationist and environmentalist from Alwar district, Rajasthan who is also known as ‘Waterman of India’. The award was handed over to him by Shri Mahbubul Hoque, Chancellor and Prof GD Sharma, Vice Chancellor of University of Science and Technology Meghalaya (USTM) in the presence of Dr RK Sharma, Advisor and a host of administrative and faculty members and students at the NKC Auditorium of USTM. The programme was organised by departments of Earth Science, Social Work, Rural Development of USTM with support from IQAC.
The winner of Stockholm Water Prize’ 2015, an award known as ‘the Nobel Prize for Water’, and Ramon Magsaysay Awardee (2001) Dr Rajendra Singh had a day-long programme at the USTM where he interacted with students on “Flood Control & Its Mitigation” and had an intensive discussion with the faculty members of the university. He also made an interesting and enlightening presentation on water for sustainable development.
Addressing the gathering, Dr Rajendra Singh said that science which can be used for the betterment of mankind with consciousness and concern is actually “science with sense”. A physician, who left practice and devoted his life for water conservation, Dr Singh and his team has rejuvenated 10,600 square kms area in Rajasthan converting it into “white zone” which was earlier declared by the Government of India as “dark zone”. He appealed to all the students of USTM to devote their knowledge for the betterment of common future of the earth and promised to dedicate his time to support their endeavour.
Emphasising on the judicious use of water, Singh said drought-hit districts in the country had increased 10 times to 365 since Independence and small rivers were dying. In contrast, flood-hit districts have gone up by eight times to 190 in 2019, he said. People must become more water literate and understand the need for conservation.
Welcoming the guest and all present, Prof GD Sharma, VC of USTM said that Dr Rajendra Singh and his team have rejuvenated 13 rivers in Rajasthan. He also said that USTM has been considered for establishment of a World Centre on Draught and Flood.