Marathwada water inequality political or natural phenomenon?

| Friday, June 3, 2016 - 10:16
First Published |
Marathwada water inequality political or natural phenomenon?

Marathwada rains 'political' or natural?

New Delhi: Farmer suicides have remained unstoppable for past many years in several districts of Marathwada and the state of Maharashtra has been since grappling with the situation, to no avail. Negligent administration, poor water management, extreme weather events and inadequate rainfall have all been blamed for the extreme drought conditions. 
The suicides have reportedly crossed the staggering 400-mark in just over four month period in 2016. Even the Chinese government extended to offer financial assistance to the Solapur Corporation to handle the crisis. Meanwhile, Maharashtra Chief Minister, Devendra Fadnavis has already sought assistance for the drought-hit villages. He has reportedly held several meetings with Home Minister, Rajnath Singh pertaining to the case.
On the hindsight, experts believe that apart from political and administrative reasons, there is more to it- and that indeed is the geography of the region.
While speaking to Sunday Guardian, sister concern of NewsX, Dr. Ranjan Kelkar, Former Director General of Indian Meteorological Department said,"Topographically, Marathwada is situated in such a way that it receives lesser rainfall than rest of the state. We have been placing unrealistic demands on the region with different natural endowment".
Marathwada Topography
India gets its rains due to the south-west monsoon. The clouds draw water from Indian Ocean as well as the Bay of Bengal. The movement of south-west monsoon enters the country through Kerala and then swirls towards the north-east direction.When it reaches Maharashtra it is greeted by Sayadhdri mountain ranges; due to which there is heavy rainfall in the coastal Maharashtra. As it reaches further to Vidarbha, its intensity decreases and by the time monsoon reaches Marathwada, the intensity is almost far below normal.
A.P Deshpande told Sunday Guardian,"The moot question is how much rainfall should be considered sufficient for the region? Objectively, the 500-600 mm rain that Marathwada receives every year is not exactly less”. Here lies the answer and that is indeed water conservation techniques. Experts say that the present governmen’t focus on Jalyukta Shivar Yojna might be a boon to the region.
Cloud seeding an option?
Cloud seeding and artificial experiments have so far not been successful in the region. Dr. Kelkar said,"The cloud seeding can’t be planned at the eleventh hour, the execution has to be conducted in a scientific manner and not in accordance with the political constituency, as has happened in the past". 
In the past there have been reports that previous governments tried the experiment in parts of Western Maharashtra which were political constituencies for a few political leaders.
Over the past 60 years, this scientific technique has given exceptional results. The technique has received approval by many international organisations like, World Meteorological departments, American Meteorological Society and the Weather Modification Association of US.
Rajendra Singh who is known for his water conservation practices in the state of Rajasthan also echoed experts’ voice mentioning that replenishment of ground water sources through partnership is the need of the hour.

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