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Rural India suffers as ground water level falls, children forced to go far away to fetch water in MP

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Raisen  Madhya Pradesh  Water Woes  Water Crisis  Begamganj  Bhopal  Begumganj



Sayeed Nadan

BHOPAL: For residents in rural parts, water crisis is becoming acute with every passing year. In summer this year, people are already reeling under the impact of water scarcity. 

This is forcing families to even send children to faraway places to get water. The fall in groundwater level is the biggest casuse of concern in the region.

Even the wells have turned dry and everyone is rushing towards the few remaining water sources. The situation is alarming in nearly 40 villages in Begumganj tehsil in Raisen district. It is barely 80 kms from the district headquarters, but the water woes have affected the lives of each and every citizen.

The effort begins in the morning and throughout the day, families worry about procuring enough water to take care of household needs, as well as other household needs. Nearly 73 years after independence, the attempts to ensure water, a basic need, hasn't borne fruit in this part of the State. The particular tehsil is facing water crisis for several years.

People in Pandajhir, Sunehra, Kiratpur, Kahiri, Hapsili, Berkhedi, Kokalpur, Chainpura, Pir Pahadi, Siltara, Sagoni, Kakrua, Jhiria, Qasba Chaika, Kalyanpur, Barri, Moodla Chawal, Umarkhoh, Mahuakheda, Keshlon, Jamunia Tekapar, Markheda GUlab, Sunwaha, Madani, Umarhari and Bhajia are among the villages that have severe water crisis.

Even new borewells were installed but it couldn't solve the issue. The manner in which the groundwater has gone down, rural populace is worried about the future. Activists say that serious efforts are needed to redress the issue. Residents have to go up to 5-10 kms to get water from faraway taps or wells that still have water.

The children are made to carry water in containers on their heads. Also, villagers use motorcycle, cycle or bullock-cart and even tractor trolley to get water. With many handpumps and wells going dry, there is no other solution. In some places, Parliamentarian's sanctioned funds have been used to bring water through tankers. The 'nal-jal' scheme has been okayed at a few places but not implemented.

"We are making efforts to deal with the crisis and will ensure that water reaches these villages. Rural populace would not be made to suffer. Either it's failed hand pump or water level issue, we are taking steps. The hand pumps are being repaired and new pipelines being put up", says Thakur Rampal Singh Rajput, the legislator.

Sayeed Nadan

Sayeed Nadan has been a journalist for 25 years. He has covered the region, particularly, Central MP, extensively.