When Vijay Bhatane and his team of district administration functionaries visited Injegaon village in February this year, this obscure hamlet in Maharashtra's Beed district still bore the wounds caused by extreme weather. Firstpost Ground Report will carry a series of four articles -- this is the second -- that documents our evaluation of the situation in Latur and Beed and how the project has caused a systemic shift in the manner in which agriculture is practiced in certain parts of these districts.
By contrast, Beed district, which is at the epicentre of the drought in Marathwada, receives a trickle at just 0.7%, while Gadchiroli, which is on the Naxal map, gets nothing at all. Seventeen of the state's districts get a share of less than 1% each of the drinking water from the state's dams.
In a sign of the rising hostilities between alliance partners, an angry Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray sought to make a political statement on Saturday by snubbing a last-minute invitation by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to attend twin ground-laying functions in Prime Minister Narendra Modi's presence on Sunday. Sena leaders are also angry that the BJP is trying to take all the credit for the Dr Ambedkar memorial and the launch of the new metro projects.
The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare launched 'Mission Indradhanush' in December last year with a view to reduce child and mother's mortality rate. Speaking on the occasion, Dr Sangale stressed on the health of mother and child, timely immunisation of child as well as breast feeding the infant immediately after their birth. Panchayast Samiti chairman Anil Jaybhaye expressed concern over the skewed male-female ratio and called upon the members of society to bring equality in sexes for the good of the society, the release added.UNI VKB SS SY RSA RAI1625
Of the eight districts in Marathwada, Beed is the worst-affected - as 190-plus farmer suicides since January this year indicate. "In case of ailments, people are not going to doctors because of the cost of treatment involved," said Kshirsagar. Activists across this belt complain of the lack of work under the MNREGA - and hence it is fuelling migration.
When Babasaheb Mhaske hanged himself from the ceiling fan of his one-room thatched-roof hut in Gawalwadi village on June 29, rains had already begun to fail in Maharashtra's Beed district. Figures from the district collectorate show that 187 farmers have committed suicide in Beed while 107 have killed themselves in Osmanabad since the start of the year. That's a nearly 50% rise in suicides in Osmanabad and a 23% increase in Beed from the whole of 2014.
A resolution was adopted at a meeting of the Gangamasla village gram sabha recently that the villagers will commit 'mass suicide' in front of the gram panchayat office on "Pola" day (bull-worshipping festival celebrated by farmers) if no help was forthcoming. A copy of the resolution has been sent to the district collector.
The Kuntephal storage tank under the Ashti lift irrigation scheme is expected to store 5.68 tmcft (thousand million cubic feet) of water for drought prone Beed district in Marathwada and irrigate nearly 27,543 hectares. The Krishna Bhima stabilisation project aims at transferring 115 tmcft of water from the Krishna basin rivers arising in the hilly areas of Kolhapur and Sangli, such as the Kumbhi, the Kasari, the Warna, the Panchaganga, and the Neera through a series of lifts and 200-odd tunnels to the Ujani dam.
"I was unable to fathom his agony when he consumed pesticide last year; this year I might follow in his footsteps,"says Rahul Athole of Talavada village in Maharashtra's Beed district as he recounts the events that forced his elder brother, Sahibrao, to take his life. The crop loss has wiped out the whole year's income of the farmers.
About 700 farmers in the drought-stricken Beed district have proved that innovative thinking can save them from a drought that has crippled thousands belonging to farming community in Marathwada. The meeting is organised on a field where all the farmers of the village are involved in a group farming meet and discuss the technologies adopted, share experiences, listen to the experts.
"We had deployed the necessary police security when Mundeji had visited Bhagwangad (in Beed district). There was a 20,000 to 25,000 strong mob that was present when the incident took place and thus the perpetrator of the crime has not been identified as yet," Fadnavis told the Legislative Council during the Question Hour. Fadnavis said that providing security to the LoP is the government's responsibility and that his security audit will be conducted within the next three days.
According to local media reports, a group of teachers in Beed were protesting since March 16 for not being paid their dues from the last one year. The exploitation of teachers in government and private educational institutions is at its peak in the state, it claimed. The government needs to tighten the rope around such institutions' necks," the Sena said.