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Tech Exodus Amid Drought Grips Bengaluru: A Call to Address Water Scarcity

BWSSB Launches Mobile-Responsive Applications to Address Water Crisis
Photo Credit : File photo

Recent reports from the Deccan Herald highlight a troubling trend in Bengaluru, India’s IT hub, as tech professionals are leaving the city amidst a worsening drought. With more than half of the city’s wells dried up due to failed rains last year, businesses and citizens are now reliant on water tankers for their daily needs.

Neighboring Kerala’s Minister made headlines by suggesting Bengaluru’s companies relocate to his state, where water availability is abundant. However, such suggestions raise concerns amidst historical tensions over water distribution in southern India.

The water scarcity issue isn’t confined to Bengaluru alone. Other cities like Chennai and Hyderabad are also grappling with similar challenges. Moreover, the southern states of Karnataka, Kerala, Telangana, and Tamil Nadu, though comprising only 15% of India’s population, contribute significantly to the country’s GDP, largely driven by the technology and manufacturing sectors.

Addressing this issue requires confronting politically sensitive industries like agriculture and power generation. While households consume only a small fraction of India’s water, the bulk of it, around 85%, goes to farming. Policies encouraging water-intensive crops like sugarcane exacerbate the problem, as does the water-intensive coal-fired electricity generation.

The upcoming general elections may delay substantial action on these pressing issues, but they cannot be overlooked. Failure to address water scarcity risks tarnishing the reputation of cities like Bengaluru and Hyderabad, known for their appeal to professionals and conducive environments.

India’s ability to navigate the challenges of climate change and sustain economic growth hinges on prioritizing the needs of its urban centers, particularly in ensuring access to clean water.

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