Severe drought struck western India, millions suffer from hunger and thirst

March 8, 2013. Millions of people in western India suffered the most because of the severe drought in nearly 50 years, writes Space Daily. People accuse the authorities of incompetence and corruption that contribute to the natural water shortages.

The central regions of the state of Maharashtra, where Mumbai is the capital, facing the greatest shortage of water than during a severe drought in 1972, said AFP Chief State minister Pritviray Shawan.

"In our history, water tanks have never been so low in the center of Maharashtra", — he said. "Every day more and more reservoirs are drying up."

Minister Shawan blamed the crisis on two consecutive weak monsoon, although others say that to blame the policy of public authorities.

Around 2,000 tanker trucks are being used to transport drinking water for those in need. For cattle, created hundreds of camps to keep cattle there in anticipation of the arrival of a new monsoon in June.

"Every day, tankers must pass all of the great distance. This is a huge logistical problem, "- said Shawan.

In the office of the Chief Minister could not give an exact figure of the victims of the 10,000 villages, but they say that the account number in the millions.

Christopher Moses works in a charity hospital in Zhalne (Jalna), one of the most affected areas. He said that many people have lost their livelihoods because of the company closed, and farmers' fields dry up.

"This is a hunger. Residents have nothing to eat, they literally scraped off the bottom of their pots "- Moses told AFP by telephone from Zhalny. "Diseases of the dirty water — on the rise hunger increases malnutrition going on right now, "- he said.

Moses says that the crisis could force it to close some of its hospitals in Zhalna the first time in its 117-year history. He has not seen any emergency water supplies from the government. Given that the life of almost three-quarters of Indians depend on the income of the rural population, the annual monsoon rains are a lifeline. Especially when you consider that about two-thirds of the arable land is not irrigated and depend entirely on rainfall.

Minister Shawan warned that there is "very serious issue" if the rains this year will be weak.

Based on: Space Daily
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