Chewang Norphel

Vasundhara Mitra

Chewang Norphel is an Indian civil engineer from Ladakh who joined the Rural Development Department of Jammu and Kashmir in 1960. He created artificial glaciers by diverting a river into a valley, slowing the stream by constructing checks at lower elevations. This increased the ground-water recharge, rejuvenating the spring and providing water for irrigation. By 2012, He had built 12 artificial glaciers, earning him the nickname Ice Man. Norphels largest glacier at Phuktsey village is 1,000 ft long, 150 ft wide and 4 ft in depth. It can supply water for the entire village of 700 people.