What is your purpose in life? For 35-year-old Nimal Raghavan, working at a software engineering firm in Dubai did not quite cut it as he quit a lucrative job to follow his dream: restoring lakes on a global scale.
To many, this would be an absurd venture especially owing to the risks involved. However, in Raghavan's case, he sought to make a positive impact on the environment, one lake at a time.
To date, he has rejuvenated over 142 lakes in his hometown in India - and is seeking to expand to other countries. The humanitarian exuded ambitions in venturing into Kenya and its neighbouring countries to continue with his mission.
"The next one will be in Kenya, where I have been invited by the Green Africa Foundation. Raghavan will work there for ten days a month over the next few months.
"We will be restoring as many lakes as possible in Africa from Kenya to Somalia," he stated in a statement. dated April 6, 2023.
Through his Non-Governmental Organization, MEGA Foundation, he also creates forest covers by creating artificial landfills around the restored lakes.
"We plant several natural species of plants. This will attract many bees, birds and will create a forest system," he noted.
On average, he raises over Ksh2 million for a lake depending on its size and the space it occupies. His go-to option is either crowd-funding or approaching the firms personally with the idea of the project.
For instance, he used Ksh2.4 million to restore Kenikkarai Lake in India which is spread across seven acres. This involved refilling it with 120 million litres of water.
"We are piping in the water here from another source, so this will take up more funding. But it could benefit 4,000 farmers once it is done," he noted.
Raghavan hopes to restore the lakes in the world by reaching out to larger corporations to assist him with the venture.
"In most places, 90 per cent of the lakes are either encroached or ill-maintained. This needs to change. The people in the region are made aware of the good practices to ensure the restored lake is not polluted and is protected. The artificial landfills also ensure the forest cycle continues," he noted.
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