Rethinking water crisis: P. Sainath
Author(s): City Air NewsP Sainath, Founder and Editor - People's Archive of Rural India at the India Today Conclave Mumbai 2019. Mumbai, September 21, 2019: P.Sainath, Founder-editor, People's Archive of Rural India called for a rethinking...
Mumbai, September 21, 2019: P.Sainath, Founder-editor, People's Archive of Rural India called for a rethinking on water crisis, not restricting it to just irrigation or drinking water problem at the India Today Conclave Mumbai 2019.
Water is a social, cultural, political, economic and environmental issue and has to be addressed from all these angles. Water should also be declared a basic right as the planet is shared by humans as well as flora and fauna. He called for prioritisation of water uses and restrict the transfer of the infinite resource from agriculture to industry, from food to cash crop, from rural to urban areas, from the poor to the rich and from livelihood to lifestyle uses. Since water wars have been fought over the last 2000 years, it was important to discuss the issue as it cannot be evaded now.
#Declare water as a basic right.
#Torrential rains don’t recharge water sources. They lead to soil erosion.
#The politics on water is different from politicians on water.
#We should be thinking about dryland farming and lower water use farming.
#Every single intra-regional dispute is around water. We need an entirely different approach on water problem.
#Between November and June, the two fastest growing industries in Maharashtra are borewell and tanker industries
#If you don’t get water after drilling 100 ft, then you will not get it till 600 ft and drilling each feet in hard rock costs Rs 75 to 90 per ft in hard rock and Rs 20 per feet in soft soil.
“Water is an explosive social, cultural, economic, political and caste issue. If we choose to look at it as a matter of efficiency, then it is not the right approach.”
“The two greatest crops in the world are hunger and thirst. And the exploitation of these yields more revenues than all other industries.”
“Borewell bankruptcies are linked to farmer suicides. With water table receding rapidly, it is increasingly difficult to reach the ground water.”
“The idea that there is an infinite supply of water is dumb.”
“India’s per capita availability of water is down from 5177 cubic metre in 1957 to 1514 cu m in 2011.”