People from across India and over 20 countries, including Israel, America, China, Japan, Europe, Denmark, Venezuela, New Zealand, Indonesia and many others, joined GIWA, Uplift, Unify and the Shift Network on the banks of the Ganga (Ganges) River, to bring their prayers, pledge their actions and root their intentions to protecting and preserving life-sustaining element of water.
The celebrations started with a beautiful live Ganga Aarti ceremony on the banks of Ganga on the 22nd March and then connected over 300 locations all over the world to celebrate and honour water during a special GIWA Water Blessing Ceremony webcast live on the 23rd morning at sunrise.
Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswatiji, GIWA Secretary General, shared, “Today, sadly, water is becoming a source of illness and death instead of life. Approximately 80% of all disease and 25% of all deaths in countries like India can be attributed to water-borne illnesses. Tragically, 4,000 children perish globally everyday from water-borne illness, the equivalent to about 200 bus loads of children. If 200 bus loads of children were taken over by bandits and then each child was shot and killed the world would rise up in absolute outrage. As a global community we would catalyze, energize and activate together to find and stop the villain. These innocent lives are lost EVERY DAY, seven days a week and 365 days a year. Sadly, the criminal is none other than our mis-actions, our neglect and our inaction to protect and preserve our precious fresh water resources. As Mahatma Gandhiji reminded us, “There is always enough for everyone’s need but there is never enough for even one man’s greed.” This is the case today when our greed, our over-consumption, our demand for more and more, bigger and bigger and our neglect of finite natural resources are causing preventable diseases and often death. Let us come together for World Water Day, with our energy and efforts as a collective community to catalyse a major revolution so that all our brothers and sisters across the world have access to life giving water. We love water, because we love life. We love water and we love those who depend on the water! Let us Love Water, celebrate water, and pledge to also protect, preserve and serve water.”
Said GIWA Co-Founder/Co-Chair HH Pujya Swami Chidanand Saraswatiji, “Today on World Water Day, let us pledge to make every day and every moment an opportunity to celebrate and cherish life, an opportunity to celebrate and cherish water, which is crucial for all life on this planet.”