Be it temples or mosques, almost all religious centres and prayer halls have demarcated areas where one can partake in the act of ablution before entering the holy premises.
As hundreds of people visit these institutions on a daily basis, the amount of water that is wasted without being repurposed is undoubtedly quite enormous and calls for retrospection.
But standing out among religious institutions across the country is a little-known mosque from Kerala, where the Muezzin or prayer caller has come up with a revolutionary idea that has not just put the wasted water from ablution to a greater purpose but also has also transformed a nearby barren plot into a fertile garden!
has been working as the muezzin of Puthiyaparambil mosque in the vilage of Peruvallur in Thrissur district for the last four years. A minimum of 600 devotees are believed to visit the mosque on a daily basis. Previously, water used in ablutions was being discharged to a nearby graveyard.
But Sharafudheen took personal effort in routing the wastewater to an adjacent two-acre patch of barren land for farming.
“Hundreds of gallons of water is discharged from the tanks of (the) mosque five times a day while believers take ablution for prayers. I did not want to waste this water. So I began using it to farm the land owned by the mosque,” said the forty-year-old to The New Indian Express.
Starting with setting up a pit, Sharafudheen then installed a pump to put the discharged water to effective use. From this pit, the water is carried to an abandoned tank nearby, following which, it is pumped to meet the irrigational requirements of the vegetation that Sharafudheen has managed to grow and nurture in the once-barren farmland.
This plot was once used to mine laterite, but after the touch of Sharafudheen’s green thumb, it is a fertile and veritable patch of lush greenery, where crops like plantain, tapioca, elephant yam and colocasia are being reaped in abundance.
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In fact, close to 200 banana bunches were harvested last year and Sharafudheen is expecting about 150 bunches this time. An interesting aspect is that the manure Sharafudheen uses to fertilise the crops is made by burning paper waste from the mosque and the adjoining madrassa. The produce is sold at the nearby marketplace.
This incredible initiative came to public notice and found wide appreciation when someone posted pictures of the same on social media. “He chose to make use of leisure time and thus, break stereotypes,” said mosque Imam, Anwar Sadiq Faizy Tanur.
Sharafudheen’s idea is not very hard to accomplish. In fact, it is the simplicity of the initiative that makes it extraordinary and something that all religious institutions across the country can emulate to conserve water—especially since water scarcity has already started showing its ugly head across different patches in India.
(Edited by Shruti Singhal)