(NEWS) Water Crisis in Bundelkhand via Hindustan Times

(NEWS) Water Crisis in Bundelkhand via Hindustan Times.

AFTER FIVE years of drought, the peo- ple of Bundelkhand have had enough. Riots have broken out in the region with people resorting to looting and violence in a desperate quest for water "There have been several instances of tankers being looted. We are supplying water for drinking and cooking, but sometimes people are hijacking tankers and using the water to bathe and wash clothes," said a Jal Sansthan officer On the night of May 6, two tankers used by Jal Sansthan were looted in Ma- hoba. Residents of the Kasbathai area of the district beat up one of the drivers. The next morning, tanker drivers went on strike and returned eight hours later only after the district administration as- sured them of adequate security The water scarcity is so acute in some areas that people are filtering slush at the base of dried-up wells and ponds to get water to drink, said Manoj of Kriti Shodh Sansthan, an NGO engaged in water conservation in Mahoba. Some weeks ago in Haveli Darwaj, Mahoba, a young man, Majid, was crushed to death by a water tanker when a crowd of people rushed to the tanker before it could come to a halt. "We are deploying police and home guard personnel in about 15 such sensi- tive areas," said Vijay Biswas Pant, dis- trict magistrate of Mahoba. The water reservoirs in Banda and Mahoba now have police pickets to prevent any clash- es. "There are fights almost every day at the surviving water sources in the re- gion. The districts of Lalitpur, Mahoba and Jhansi are the worst hit," said San- jay Singh of Parmarth that works in all seven districts of UP's Bundelkhand. According to Pushpendra of Aapda Nivarak Manch, "The need is to create water sources and sustainable arrange- ments for water How much water can the government supply through water tankers and to how many villages?"

Courtesy: Pankal Jaiswal - Hindustantimes.com