Photos: Bundelkhand’s droughts and dreams unfulfilled for want of water

With little or no rainfall, the Bundelkhand region of Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh in India has suffered several consecutive droughts. The inaccessibility of clean water source has denied people of the area to lead their lives with productive roles. And this scenario has snatched their future aspirations and provided them with dream of only to be able to manage time and collect enough water to survive a day.

Updated On May 23, 2018 09:52 AM IST
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Spread across the states of Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh, the Bundelkhand region has suffered several consecutive droughts with little or no rainfall. For many, a clean source of water close to the home remains a distant dream. (Prashanth Vishwanathan / WaterAid)
Updated on May 23, 2018 09:52 AM IST

Spread across the states of Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh, the Bundelkhand region has suffered several consecutive droughts with little or no rainfall. For many, a clean source of water close to the home remains a distant dream. (Prashanth Vishwanathan / WaterAid)

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Women are often the worst affected by the crisis. Azmatun, 18, (pictured) gave up on school after class 8. Neither an early marriage, nor poor academics were the culprit. It takes her close to an hour to reach the river from her village Saifur Maapi in Uttar Pradesh and almost two hours back with water. These trips ate into time that could have been spent in school. (Prashanth Vishwanathan / WaterAid)
Updated on May 23, 2018 09:52 AM IST

Women are often the worst affected by the crisis. Azmatun, 18, (pictured) gave up on school after class 8. Neither an early marriage, nor poor academics were the culprit. It takes her close to an hour to reach the river from her village Saifur Maapi in Uttar Pradesh and almost two hours back with water. These trips ate into time that could have been spent in school. (Prashanth Vishwanathan / WaterAid)

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With water never enough to sustain even a day’s requirements it is the needs of their families and other productive work that suffers. Moving to Chamraha village in Uttar Pradesh after marriage, 25-year-old Golaniya had no idea what water shortage was and the hours she’d lose everyday to fetching water from the water hole a kilometre away. (Prashanth Vishwanathan / WaterAid)
Updated on May 23, 2018 09:52 AM IST

With water never enough to sustain even a day’s requirements it is the needs of their families and other productive work that suffers. Moving to Chamraha village in Uttar Pradesh after marriage, 25-year-old Golaniya had no idea what water shortage was and the hours she’d lose everyday to fetching water from the water hole a kilometre away. (Prashanth Vishwanathan / WaterAid)

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Even Hand pumps are not a reliable option. There are always long queues and the few hand pumps that are there, run dry after every few buckets. The wait for water levels to recover often results in arguments and fights over who will fill water first. All this, despite the fact the water is salty and mostly undrinkable. (Prashanth Vishwanathan / WaterAid)
Updated on May 23, 2018 09:52 AM IST

Even Hand pumps are not a reliable option. There are always long queues and the few hand pumps that are there, run dry after every few buckets. The wait for water levels to recover often results in arguments and fights over who will fill water first. All this, despite the fact the water is salty and mostly undrinkable. (Prashanth Vishwanathan / WaterAid)

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Pappi Pal, 22, shares Golaniya’s experience in Chamraha village. The village’s wells have dried down and its few hand pumps are shared between hundreds of families. Those well off have dug deep borewells, further depleting groundwater levels. Pappi Pal complains of leg ailments form the multiple trips daily and has had to resort to using a bicycle to ease the strain. (Prashanth Vishwanathan / WaterAid)
Updated on May 23, 2018 09:52 AM IST

Pappi Pal, 22, shares Golaniya’s experience in Chamraha village. The village’s wells have dried down and its few hand pumps are shared between hundreds of families. Those well off have dug deep borewells, further depleting groundwater levels. Pappi Pal complains of leg ailments form the multiple trips daily and has had to resort to using a bicycle to ease the strain. (Prashanth Vishwanathan / WaterAid)

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The inaccessibility of clean water keeps children away from school, denies women and men the opportunity to lead productive roles, impacts health, forces migration, and holds back communities from moving towards more fulfilled lives. (Prashanth Vishwanathan / WaterAid)
Updated on May 23, 2018 09:52 AM IST

The inaccessibility of clean water keeps children away from school, denies women and men the opportunity to lead productive roles, impacts health, forces migration, and holds back communities from moving towards more fulfilled lives. (Prashanth Vishwanathan / WaterAid)

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The job isn’t done even after getting water home. The ‘chonghada’ (water hole) Golaniya draws water from is sweet unlike the village hand pumps, but prone to making people ill. The small quantities she manages to bring back must be cleaned before use and Golaniya uses a cloth before she or her family can consume it. (Prashanth Vishwanathan / WaterAid)
Updated on May 23, 2018 09:52 AM IST

The job isn’t done even after getting water home. The ‘chonghada’ (water hole) Golaniya draws water from is sweet unlike the village hand pumps, but prone to making people ill. The small quantities she manages to bring back must be cleaned before use and Golaniya uses a cloth before she or her family can consume it. (Prashanth Vishwanathan / WaterAid)

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Pappi Pal, fond of stitching, dreams of setting up her tailoring business. But between the day’s chores and the responsibility of drawing water for her family and their cattle her aspirations have no way of moving forward. A business brings with it hope for her family’s prosperity, but remains a dream until clean water reached them first. (Prashanth Vishwanathan / WaterAid)
Updated on May 23, 2018 09:52 AM IST

Pappi Pal, fond of stitching, dreams of setting up her tailoring business. But between the day’s chores and the responsibility of drawing water for her family and their cattle her aspirations have no way of moving forward. A business brings with it hope for her family’s prosperity, but remains a dream until clean water reached them first. (Prashanth Vishwanathan / WaterAid)

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In this scenario of struggling for water, a number of important aspects get ignored. Golaniya’s dreams of constructing a house and toilet for instance, keep getting delayed as water is never enough. The home is an aspiration for a comfortable life but she sees little point in building one when even getting drinking water there would be a struggle. (Prashanth Vishwanathan / WaterAid)
Updated on May 23, 2018 09:52 AM IST

In this scenario of struggling for water, a number of important aspects get ignored. Golaniya’s dreams of constructing a house and toilet for instance, keep getting delayed as water is never enough. The home is an aspiration for a comfortable life but she sees little point in building one when even getting drinking water there would be a struggle. (Prashanth Vishwanathan / WaterAid)

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