Water Aid India has commissioned two films for use by the Government of India, appealing to the rural public to keep drinking water sources clean. The films have been conceptualised by DDB Mudra Group.
One of the films features a group of people watching a cricket match featuring India and Australia in a rural home. A young man notices the villagers hooked to the TV repeatedly using the idiom ‘Gayi bhains paani mein’ (The buffalo goes into the water), whenever an Indian bowler is smashed around for runs. When his father asks him for water to drink, he returns with a glass of visibly dirty water, reasoning that if the buffalo goes into the water so many times, it’s bound to become dirty. The Government’s appeal of not allowing cattle to bathe in drinking water sources and humans not defecating near these water bodies is rendered through animation. The film ends with the message, ‘Jal hai toh kal hai’ (Where there’s water, there’s a future).
Another film follows on similar lines but is set outside a rural dhaba (roadside eatery). Two young men are seeing off a third, who is moving to the city. While saying that they will miss him, they splash water repeatedly, imitating tears. When they ask for water to drink after this, a waiter gives them three empty glasses, with the dhaba owner underlining the importance of saving clean drinking water.
Neeraj Jain, chief executive, WaterAid India, said, “Water is a precious resource and India is one of the most water stressed nations in the world. It is important that this precious resource is conserved and local water sources are not polluted. The PSAs that WaterAid India commissioned from DDB Mudra for use by the Government of India put across these messages in a simple but creative manner. I hope that they are effective in inculcating in all of us the necessity for careful management and conservation of our meagre fresh water resources.”
Sonal Dabral, chairman and CCO, DDB Mudra Group, said, “To work on a campaign for an issue of such critical importance as water conservation was not just exciting but daunting at the same time. We are really happy that by building on some very deep rooted insights about water, we were able to create work that has successfully connected with our audience and made them take a fresh look at this vastly ignored problem.”
Sambit Mohanty, creative head, DDB Mudra North, added, “We live in a world where water is taken for granted – more so in rural, semi-urban areas where potable water is wasted and water bodies are used in an unhygienic manner. Our ‘Jal hai toh kal hai’ campaign aims to sensitise people to treat this precious natural resource with more respect and consideration."