Fighting flood and drought, millions in Bihar lose livelihoods -Saurav Kumar
Millions have been displaced, while a loss of crop and reduced yield are expected across the state.
For the past few months, Bihar has been making headlines for many reasons. Disease outbreak, mob lynching or the state’s political affairs have seen it receive plenty of media coverage. But the state is now in the news for concurrently facing two natural disasters: drought and flood.
This is not the first time that Bihar has witnessed either flood or drought. But it is the first time that both have occurred parallelly, in different parts of the state. Reports say that the two disasters have resulted in millions losing their livelihoods.
Chief minister Nitish Kumar has called a high-level meeting of top officials over both the flood and drought situation. A drought-like situation prevails in 22 districts, while 12 districts are affected by floods. North Bihar is engulfed in a flood, while south Bihar is experiencing severe drought with deficient rainfall. However, the government has not yet declared a drought.
Deficient rainfall in the south
The latest Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) figures show that ten districts – Gaya, Jehanabad, Nalanda, Rohtas, Aurangabad, Patna, Begusarai, Sheikhpura, Saharsa and Banka – have received 26-55% less rainfall than normal. Most of these districts, which fall under the Magadh region of the state, are known drought-prone areas of the state. They have faced a water crisis for many years.
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