The year 2019, is the 100th anniversary of the Jalianwala Bagh Massacre that shook the consciousness of the entire nation. As the veteran journalist and Magsaysay award winner, P Sainath puts it, "Our spirit did not break, their empire did."
As the celebrations of Indian Independence from the British Raj winds up, it is time for us to retrospect on the current water crisis in India. Since India attracted waves of invasions due to its abundance primarily due to its ever-flowing rivers, the same rivers are now increasingly the source of worry.
On the one hand, parts of India are under heavy rainfall and floods, while the rest of India is still monsoon deficient.
As Sainath, aptly covers in his other article, It's raining sand in Rayalseema, these arid wilderness scenes are not from the great Indian desert of Rajasthan or the Bollywood immortalized wild wild Chambal Ghati. But from one of the most prosperous regions of ancient India.
As predicted by climate scientists, the coastal cities of Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, and other coastal cities will face a catastrophic reversal in their economy, as early as 2050.
"According to a World Bank report, about 600 million Indians could suffer high to extreme water stress by 2050. What could make matters worse is the possibility of a 200-fold increase in heatwave exposure by 2100. The frequency of severe heat waves in India could see a 75-fold increase by 2100. If temperatures continue to rise and monsoon rainfall patterns continue to change, the country could see a GDP loss of 2.8 percent, depressing the living standards of nearly half its population by 2050." -- Source, DownToEarth.in
To read complete report and charts, please press "Start Exploring" on the following link https://www.downtoearth.org.in/dte-infographics/61502_extreme_anomaly_india.html
The following infographics from Association for India's Development (AID volunteers explain that Destruction of the forest is one of the biggest contributing factors towards floods and desertification of India.
Due to deforestation, the water retention capacities of the soil has been adversely affected. Once, the mighty forests of Western India would hold adequate water to ebb the flow of rivers and support the perenniality of these rivers.
In my January 2019 visit to India, one of the forest conservationist in Pune, Mrs. Jayashree Jog mentioned that the mighty forest of Western India was destroyed to convert wood to charcoal to support industries in India.
Whose Independence is it anyway when the backbone of the economy is based on the environmental destruction?
These pictures show the unfortunate aftermath of Forest Fire in Payvihir on April 13, 2019. Over 1,53,000 trees were burnt and much of the grass cover lost. This project was one of the top livelihood projects in India that protected the rights of the tribal over the forest and also help regenerate the forest.
Please contribute for rebuilding efforts, even $20, $50 would go a long way. Please donate at our secured donate page at http://www.aidjhu.org/donate
AID is a 501 (c) (3) organization with EIN 04-3652609 and all donations to AID are tax-exempt in the United States.Read more
October 2015, Payvihir:
Payvihir eco-village was started when the organization KHOJ helped the villagers of Payvihir to bring around 180 hectares of land under the gram panchayat as per the Forest Rights Act (FRA). Srinivasan C with the experience of Vellore Hill Restoration Project got involved in the project and helped the village of Payvihir in planning and execution of afforestation. Today around 1 Lakh saplings are planted in the village of Payvihir with the help of MGNREGS (Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme). Contour Check Dams were initially dug to help percolate the water. With the help of department of renewable energy, a grant of Rs. 75 lakhs helped the villages of Payvihir and Naykheda to build 70 community biogas plants. The aim is to reduce the dependency of households of both the villages from firewoods. Payvihir received the United Nations Development Program award for the decentralized governance and biodiversity.
Site visit to Chetana Vikas, an AID sponsored project to fight farmer suicides in central India.
A total 300,000 farmers have committed suicide in India in the past 20 years, primarily in the central Indian region of Vidarbha and Telangana. The primary causes are the introduction of high input farming, low farm credit/loan, reduced water levels due to deforestation, the unfair price given to farmers (especially cotton growers). The introduction of genetically modified (GM) cotton primarily by Monsanto has further increased the cost of farming and further led to distress in India. Increased use of pesticides in farming has increased instances of cancer cases across India.Read more
August 15, 2014: Aamir Khan visits inaugration of Solid and Liquid Resource Management Center in Jodhpur, a project managed and directed by Srinivasan C (AID JHU supported).
To support such work, please donate by check payable to "AID", AID JHU, Mattin Center 131, Mailbox #18, 3400 N Charles St, Baltimore, MD 21218
AID JHU supported project Chetana Vikas Director Mr. Ashok Bang speaking at National Convention for Organic Farming. Chandigarh, 2015
Interview of Dr. Arup Roy, who is founder of Berabhenge school.
Site visit by Somnath Mukherji.
Please see the slide show for the complete photo essay. Press the following icon in the slide show below for full screen.
Fullfill your yearly pledge by donating for this project at http://www.aidjhu.org/donate