In Karnataka's harshest summer, the only prayer on the lips is for rains

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Discussing the drought from the comfort of an air conditioned chamber is probably the easiest thing to do.

The ground reality in most villages in Karnataka which is facing one of the harshest summers is not just worrisome, but also painful to speak about.

karnataka map

People sitting around puddles or besides to leaking pipe to quench their thirst has become a routine in most parts of the state. In most places, people depend on the tankers for paid water.

The canals have gone dry thanks to the harsh summer and mindless lifting of sand from the tank bed. Over all if there are no good rains in the next couple of weeks, the situation is only going to get worse.

The worst affected:

There are around 196 villages in Uttara Kannada which have been declared as drought hit. The lack of water has led to paddy grown in nearly 25,000 hectares of land being destroyed.

The ground water has been depleting fast and this has added to the problem and burden of the people. However there have been some measures taken by the government which has made matters slightly better.

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A total sum of Rs 9.20 crore has been given as compensation to the farmers apart from the sanctioning of nearly 375 drinking water relief works.

In Kalaburgi district the situation is grim. Nearly 314 villages are facing a severe scarcity of water. Out of these villages, around 100 rely on water supplied through tankers.

Sights of children and women sitting in front of leaking pipes to quench their thirst has become a common sight. The older folk compare the situation to the one in 1972, but add that this year it is much worse.

Many people have gradually started moving out of the villages. They say that they would return once the situation improves.

At the moment the tankers do provide for at least 3 to 4 buckets of water per house hold, but if the situation continues, it may reduce and would making living in the villages impossible.

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The Chitradurga district is facing a problem of water scarcity for almost five years now. However this year it is the worst. The depletion of the ground water levels has hit the residents hard.

The district administration has been taking steps to ensure that people get drinking water. However the administration too is praying hard for the rains as in the current scenario the water levels are depleting.

If the situation continues and there are no good rains in another 15 days, then it could worsen the situation. The other worry on hand is the storage in the dams too is decreasing.

The only prayer on the lips of each resident of the above places is for rains. Special prayers are being organised in many villages praying for rains. Will the prayers be answered, " only God can tell."

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