It was November 2022, when the pump motor that provided water to the entire village suddenly burnt out. Panic filled the air as the villagers realized that their access to water was about to become a major hurdle. They had water available, but without a working pump, it might as well have been out of reach. The dream of the Jal Jeevan mission seemed to be slipping away.
However, in the face of adversity, there emerged a group of unsung heroes—the Village Water and Sanitation Committee (VWSC). Their presence would prove to be a beacon of hope for Palthara. Without them, the situation would have worsened. But their determination and unity were about to change everything.
It all started when the VWSC recognized the crucial role they could play in addressing the water crisis. They held a Jal Chaupal meeting, bringing together the entire community to discuss the ground reality and establish the VWSC. What made this committee special was its recognition of the importance of women in water-related affairs. Thus, the Palthara-VWSC consisted of not just dedicated pump operators, but also twelve strong women members.
The VWSC's members and a treasurer were democratically elected through an Aam Sabah gathering. They had a vision of effective service delivery and knew that financial contributions were necessary. In a remarkable show of unity, the community collectively decided to contribute 60 Rupees each month to support the water supply scheme.
When the pump motor malfunctioned, the VWSC faced a roadblock. They sought assistance from the Gram Panchayat and PHED, hoping for a helping hand. Unfortunately, none came. Yet, this setback only fueled their determination to find a solution. The VWSC took matters into their own hands and sprang into action.
Without wasting any time, they independently mobilized and collected advance tariffs from villagers on the very same day. The community members understood the urgency and willingly contributed to cover the repair expenses. Their unity and sense of responsibility shone through as they swiftly collected the necessary funds. With the repair expenses covered, the pump was soon fixed, and the water supply resumed, much to the relief of everyone in Palthara.
The story of Palthara village is a testament to the power of community engagement and the pivotal role of the VWSC. Through their active involvement, the village demonstrated collective strength, sustainable usage, and community ownership. But what made this story truly remarkable was the significant role played by women. Their primary involvement in water-related responsibilities proved invaluable and showcased their strength and resilience.
In the end, the heroes of Palthara village showcased the true power of unity and determination. With an active and dedicated VWSC, they successfully tackled the pump motor incident, ensuring the availability and accessibility of sustainable water resources for their community. Their story will forever serve as an inspiration, reminding us that together, we can overcome any challenge and build a better future for all.