The northern Indian states of Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and Haryana are in the grip of a severe drought.
CU Dried and withered maize (4 SHOTS)
CU Dried and withered paddy (2 SHOTS)
CU Parched and cracked earth
GV AND CU Dried and withered sugar cane
LV AND CU Farmers with tractors queuing at diesel pump (4 SHOTS)
LV AND CU Farmer standing beside tube well (2 SHOTS)
CU PAN Water flowing into paddy
LV AND CU PAN Diesel pump motor pumping water along irrigation channels
SV AND CU Farmer breaching channel wall to let water; into field (3 SHOTS)
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Background: The northern Indian states of Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and Haryana are in the grip of a severe drought. Most of the crops of paddy, maize and sugar cane are dying for lack of water. So far this year the states have only received about half their normal rainfall - and in one state the effect has been so severe that authorities have had to restrict to power supply.
SYNOPSIS: After years of floodings the northern Indian states of Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and Haryana are experiencing one of their most crippling droughts. This year the Monsoon has been about half what is normally is and crops are withering in the fields because of it. Other areas also face dry, hard conditions, but none so severe as the northern areas of the country.
More than half of Uttar Pradesh has been affected by the drought - a drought described as the worst for more than fifty years. As many as thirty-five of the states' fifty-six districts have been hit, and added to the misery is an acute power shortage.
There is also a shortage of diesel oil, although the shortage is not just restricted to the northern parts of the country. Short supply of fuel has however meant an added burden to the farmers.
Farmers have been promised a power supply for their irrigation projects on a priority basis. To achieve this local authorities have cut all electrical power to state - run cinemas between the hours of 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. No consumer, including government offices, will be allowed to operate air conditioners and coolers. Shops and offices will also have their power cut back by one hour each evening.
Fortunately the drought will not mean a lack of food in the states. The government reports that they have adequate supplies of food and have reassure the people there will not be a shortage. The irony is that while some states have been affected by the drought, others have experiencing floods and unprecedented landslides.