Rats, skulls and drought: Is India facing an impending war over water?
Rats, skulls and drought: Is India facing an impending war over water?.
Rats and exhumed skulls have become the new motif of protest for starving farmers.
South Indian states and, generally, the Indian subcontinent is fast outrunning its water supply.
They are not looking into the drought situation as indicative of a bigger crisis, one that can’t be solved through temporary relief measure – irrespective of the amount- or, through allotting lands to the families of the departed or, more controversially, through linking of the major rivers of South India.
Many parts of the world, even in the developed countries, are naturally arid.
Otherwise, as the World Bank has recently pointed out, the country “will have neither the cash to maintain and build new infrastructure, nor the water required for the economy and for people.” India needs to start its war against drought by ensuring better storage.
The fickle rainfall jeopardises farming because India has the capacity to store only relatively small amount of rainwater.
Whereas the developed countries, which are located in the major river basins can store rainwater collected over 900 days, India can store only about 30 days of rainfall.
Secondly, agricultural research needs to give serious attention to irrigation challenges faced by Indian farmers.
Presently, the paddy varieties grown in India are water-intensive in nature.