Kashmir, Kedarnath, Kaziranga, Chennai, Kerala, Kodagu…. these are the places which witnessed how much damage can floods cause in the recent past. In each place, reports said it had not happened like that in the past few decades. Yeah, not in the same place but in half a decade it happened in many places all over India. South East monsoons which first hit Kerala’s coastal line, begin there journey from there and the clouds take the routes where the pressure drop is high and pour the rains there. if no where else, as a last stop, they reach the Himalaya’s and empty out themselves fully.
What seemed to be a rare event, is no more a rare one if you observe the regularity of it happening in one or the places of India. Of course, global warming is for real. It is making the seasonal patterns abrupt and taking the sea water levels high too. As a result, we are experiencing extremes of weather – too hot and sunny during summer and water pouring from the heaven during the winter.
If we look at how we respond, we are not doing any great job with weather forecasts. And when things break loose, our citizens just cry for help. Why did they built their houses on the riverbeds and encroached lakes in the first place? What happened to the rain drains? Where did they disappear? Why did we build such low bridges across the river streams? What kind of town planning did our Corporations made? It is a collective failure in anticipating risks and managing them.
If no one takes responsibility and pass through this again as a one-off situation, nature will continue to give us lessons every year. It is time to take long term corrective actions and learn the ways of the nature. History shows those who did not adopt to nature’s ways like those of Mayan civilization (and our own Harappa too) did not survive the master strokes of the nature. Hundreds of years of civilization disappeared in a matter of few days when they were faced with floods, earthquakes and other natural calamities. We Indians are surviving for 5,000 years but it does not mean we will survive in future too. Last week’s chaos and deaths in Kerala showed how ill prepared we are for the nature’s ways.
Mother nature is kind and nurturing. But she will wash away all those getting on her way too.