Friday April 20, 2018

According to a charity, the number of rural Indians without clean water equivalent to UK population

The report by Wateraid states that 63 million rural people in India do not have access to clean water, mostly due to remote locations and climate issues

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child drinking water, wikimedia
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New Delhi, March 21, 2017: According to a development charity,  India happens to be the home to the largest number of rural people without access to clean water. The country also faces an increased strain on scarce resources due to an escalating population and climate change among other factors, a development charity. Tuesday WaterAid stated over 63 million rural Indians (the number being equivalent of the population of Britain) do not use clean water to drink, cook or wash with, mostly due to remote locations,poor planning, weak infrastructure and such issues.

China occupied the second place with almost 44 million rural people without clean water in the report by WaterAid. The third spot was shared by Nigeria and Ethiopia; each with more than 40 million rural people without access to safe water, according to the study released ahead of World Water Day on March 22. In a statement, V K Madhavan, Chief Executive, Wateraid India said, “A majority of these people come from poor rural communities and any significant variation in the climate only worsens their daily struggle to access clean water.”

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He believes, because of the disaster-stricken state of 27 out of the 35 states and union territories, the poorest and the most marginalised across the country will have to bear the brunt of extreme weather events and climate change and naturally will find it the hardest to adapt.

According to Indian Express, Around 663 million people globally have no access to clean water, with almost 80 percent – 522 million – living in rural areas, WaterAid’s report said. Many are in countries that are already highly vulnerable to extreme weather hazards such as cyclones, floods and droughts. The rise in climate-related extreme weather events not only worsens their plight, but also leaves millions more water insecure, it added.

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It can be expected that diseases such as cholera, blinding trachoma, malaria and dengue will become more common and malnutrition more prevalent. A struggle to grow food and feed livestock amid soaring temperatures among rural farming communities can also be predicted.

According to the Notre Dame Global Adaptation Index, even though it is one of the world’s fastest growing economies, India ranks amongst countries that are most vulnerable to climate change, but least ready to adapt.

Since sweeping to power in 2014 sanitation has been prioritized by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government – launching a “Clean India” campaign  which aims to provide toilets for all and end open defecation in the country by 2019. But it must be admitted that the task is mammoth.

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Wateraid’s repost has also mentioned that nearly 76 million Indians need improved water sources and 770 million require proper toilets. As a result, annually 68,000 children under five pass away due to diarrhea and such diseases caused by unsafe water access and poor sanitation, it added.

– prepared by Durba Mandal of NewsGram. Twitter: @dubumerang

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Waves of black as Modi visits Chennai

Tamil Nadu has been in turmoil since the six-week period for setting up the Board expired, with opposition parties and a host of fringe Tamil groups attacking the Centre

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi (FILE PHOTO)

Black flags and balloons and activists in black shirts and trousers greeted Prime Minister Narendra Modi as he paid a whirlwind visit to Chennai with helicopter as the chosen mode of transport in the wake of statewide agitation demanding constitution of the Cauvery Management Board (CMB).

Protests were also held with black flags and placards throughout Tamil Nadu in cities like Tiruchi, Thanjavur, Coimbatore and Tuticorin against the Prime Minister’s brief visit to the state and the Centre’s failure to constitute the CMB despite a Supreme Court order. Black flags were hoisted on homes and business establishments across the state.

Prime Minister, Narendra Modi stressed on the importance of service to others in his last Mann Ki Baat edition for 2017.
Narendra Modi welcomed with black flags in chennai.

In a bid to avoid protesters, Modi, who arrived here by a special aircraft in the morning, chose a helicopter to reach Tiruvidanthai, in neighbouring Kanchipuram district where he opened the 10th DefExpo organised by the Defence Ministry. From there he took another chopper to come to IIT Madras, in the heart of the city. From there, he took a one-kilometre ride by car to the neighbouring Adyar Cancer Institute for an event.

The Prime Minister walked a few steps from the helicopter to the car that ferried him to the Cancer Institute. As he did so, he encountered some 30 students from IIT Madras who stood silently but held posters demanding a Cauvery Management Board as ordered by the Supreme Court — an issue which has whipped up emotions in Tamil Nadu. Modi then left by helicopter to the airport before returning to Delhi.

Also Read: Modi is anti-Dalit, will defeat BJP in 2019: Rahul Gandhi

#Go back Modi trended on top as netizens took to the cyberspace to register their protest against the Central government’s failure to set up the CMB as directed by the Supreme Court to ensure proper sharing of Cauvery waters between Tamil Nadu and Karnataka and other states.

DMK leader M.K. Stalin, who was on a padayatra of the Cauvery delta areas, wore black shirt and trousers as he protested along with state Congress President Thirunavukkarasar and CPI-M state unit chief Mutharasan. “The Prime Minister may be flying in the air today but he has to come down when the elections come,” he said taking a dig at Modi.

A black flag was hoisted at DMK chief M. Karunanidhi’s residence. The ailing leader wore a black shirt. DMK MP Tiruchi Siva and leaders of DMK allies wore black dress and marched on the road near the Chennai airport.

In the morning outside the Chennai airport, activists of the Federation for protection of Tamil Art and Culture, led by noted film director Bharatiraja and other film personalities like Amir, Gautaman and Vetrimaran protested against Modi’s visit. They were arrested.

will also hold a meeting there with the Indian community. Wikimedia Commons
Cauvery River Dispute is going on for a while now. Wikimedia Commons

While MDMK chief Vaiko held a black flag protest in Velachery, Naam Thamizhar Katch convenor Seeman, a film director, was arrested elsewhere. Vaiko called Modi a “coward” for choosing to fly. Political leaders Velmurugan and P. Nedumaran were arrested from Alandur metro station in Chennai for holding black flag protests.

Tamil Nadu has been in turmoil since the six-week period for setting up the Board expired, with opposition parties and a host of fringe Tamil groups attacking the Centre, saying the BJP was interested only in winning the Assembly elections in Karnataka. Even the hugely-popular IPL cricket matches have been shifted out of Chennai to Pune in view of the disturbances on Tuesday. IANS