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The Water Cookbook

Sarai - The Water Cookbook - Pump

Sarai - The Water Cookbook - Cover Sarai - The Water Cookbook - Pump


The Water Cookbook presents ideas from the Sarai project on peri-urban sustainability in Ghaziabad, India. It is a short graphic novel combining pictures with brief stories from daily life in the city.


“All sense of discrimination would escape ones body on the first sight of the Pump. There were no lovers, relatives, elders, kith or kin in this line. And what was wrong with that? Water is the basis of our life. It crosses the simple boundary of need for those who can’t get it. Everyone in that line knew that.

The ruckus around the hand pump awoke Lakhan. He sat on his bed, wiped his face and stared blankly at the pump. His neighbor Mishri Ram, the owner of the daily goods store next door, walked upto him.

Mishri: I don’t know when this bickering will ever stop… its almost become a ritual now.

Lakhan: Brother… this is a war for water.. it wont let go so easily. Haven’t you heard of Bhagirath’s penance.. how hard he had to work to get the Ganges to come down from the heavens to this earth?”


The book can be accessed and downloaded from the Sarai Archive.


Texts and Drawings: Bhagwati Prasad

Design: Amitabh Kumar

Translation from Hindi: Alankar

Research Collaboration: Alankar, Awadhendra Sharan, Flona Marshall, Hayley Maegregor, Lokesh, Layla Mehta, Linda Waldman, Pritpal Randhawa

Published by The Sarai Programme, CSDS, Delhi, with support from the STEPS Center, Institute of Development Studies (IDS), University of Sussex, UK.