Kaladungi (Kumon) Uttarakhand, Sep.23 : A majority of residents in the rural Kumaon region of Uttarakhand continue to use the vintage water-powered mills for grinding purposes.
In the remote population in Kaladungi and other areas in Kumaon region people don't want to give up the water powered mills.
The British, in the late 19th century, are known to have originally introduced water-powered mill here. Since then residents have found it easy for everyone to get the wheat grinded into flour.
One of the reasons stated by residents of rural Kumaon about their preference for the water powered mill is that since there was no electricity in most of the villages in the region, people had to travel distant places for getting the wheat grinded.
Besides, with the aid of water powered mill, the mode grinding wheat into flour is quite simple and hence its importance.
Water in a channel branched off a stream propels the blades of a waterwheel. The wheel, in turn, sets in motion millstones grinding wheat grain into flour.
"People from all the nearby villages come here to grind the wheat into flour. The grinder grinds eight to ten quintals of flour everyday. The mill belongs to the British era and the stream was diverted this side for ironsmiths. When the British saw that there was no electricity, they thought of building a mill, which runs with water. Since then this water mill is running," said Raviraj, the mill owner.
"There is no electricity here and in other nearby villages. We come here to the water mill to get the wheat grinded. It's been a very long time since we have been coming here," said Mukesh, a customer.
The water powered mill grinds up to 10-15 quintals of wheat everyday.
Residents believe that the flour that is grinded from the water-powered mill is good for health.
"The flour, which is ground in watermill, is good because the flour from an electric mill has its nutrients lost. So people come here in large number. Around 20-25 people come here everyday to grind their wheat grains," said Ramesh, a tea vendor.
Where on one side the people are getting good quality of the flour from the water powered mill, on the other side, it is also helping in saving the electricity, which is a major problem there. By Ashish Goel