India Drought Relief Update

Post a Comment » Written on April 14th, 2014     
Filed under: Disaster Relief
MAHARASHTRA (5)About 11,108 villages of 34 districts in Maharashtra, India were hit by severe drought during 2013.  There were shortages of water, not only for drinking, but also for watering crops. Farmers were helpless and people didn’t know where to go for help and many left the area in search of work and food. As tankers were made available and hand pumps were repaired, water was more accessible but villagers knew that more needed to be done. People are now thinking about adopting an alternative cropping pattern. They are considering adopting sustainable crops instead of cash crops. For example, mango trees need sufficient care and nurture in the beginning stages, but once they are grown they can survive even when there is an obvious scarcity of water.

This drought has left many in need of immediate relief. Here is one story of survival:

My name is Sunil Gangaram Landge. MAHARASHTRA (3) I am 39 years old.  We have 2 sons and a daughter.  We work as manual laborers.  We are extremely poor.  Therefore, many a time I could not afford to buy food for the family and we went to bed without any food.  My hard work did not pay enough to buy food for us.  Quite a number of times we had borrowed money from the neighbors and relatives to buy at least a day’s meal for the family.  It happened that the neighbors and relatives refused to lend any money or any kind of help.   Everyone was talking about drought. Neighbors were telling that there will be shortage of food and water, because the government has announced arrival of drought.  But it did not make much difference to our lives, because we went hungry then and we would remain hungry with the arrival of drought. 

MAHARASHTRA (4)Many things were happening around, but no help reached us.  Then we heard about ‘grain bank’, which will give jawars to people like us and we will be able to have food for some more days.  I thank those sirs and our village leaders, who included my name in the list they were preparing.  After few days, I received 1 sack of jawar (25 kilograms grains in 1 sack).  It was like a hope of survival during the devastating drought. It was sufficient for us to survive till the monsoon. 

We are thankful to our leaders, our church, and everyone who thought about us and gave us grains of survival.  We will never forget what they have done.  MAHARASHTRA (6)

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