Video Producer: Shohini Bose
Video Editor: Pawan Kumar
A video showing women climbing up the well after fetching water to drink for their families from Madhya Pradesh's Dindori district is doing the rounds on social media. The video has been identified to be from Dheemartola village of Ghusiya Panchayat in Dindori.
A similar video from Maharashtra's Nashik district went viral on 8 April, which showed women taking turns to climb down a steep well to fetch water. The state government was forced to take action after the video went viral, by sending water tanks as 'immediate relief' for villagers.
In the Dindori village, too, women were seen fetching water from the base of the well where the water somehow collects drip by drip. The villagers go down to the base and fill their pots and utensils with drinking water using a mug or small vessel before it is pulled up using ropes.
'Most Wells Dry in Summer'
Rudiya Bai, a resident of Dheemartola village, tells The Quint that there are three wells in the village, of which two have dried up completely and one gets some water collected as the underground sources leak water. The villagers even climb down the well in the middle of the night to fetch water, she adds.
"We face water problems. Be it day or night, we have to go down the well and fetch water to drink… all politicians come but nobody solves our problem."Rudiya Bai
Around 500 families reside in Dheemartola and the situation is such that women and girls have to go down the well nearly 30 feet to get water. Although under the 'Nal Se Jal' scheme of the Shivraj Singh Chouhan government hand pumps have been sanctioned and installed, locals say the distance of these hand pumps from the village forces them to choose the riskier way to get drinking water.
'We Fill Water Through the Day'
The villagers say that although this situation persists almost throughout the year, it gets worse in summers as all water sources dry up.
"We fill water at all times of the day including in night. When we don't have even a jug of water to drink, what will we do? We go down the well, be it at 3 am or 4 am, and fetch water."Narmadiya Bai, resident of Ghusiya panchayat, Dindori district
Another villager Kusum says they will refrain from voting until their problems are solved.
"When we are facing problems, no one comes. However when they want the votes they will rush to us. We will not cast our votes now until we get the water."Kusum
(With inputs from Deepak Tamrakar)