Shimla is facing severe water crisis this summer Image: AFP
Most of us are aware of the looming dangers of global warming and its after-effects, but do we ever stop and think about how to control it? Guess not, and that's why we keep getting warning signs from mother earth. This year, amid rising temperatures and severe water shortage problems, residents of Shimla, Himachal Pradesh, are requesting tourists not to visit the hill station.
The water shortage situation in Shimla has worsened to such an extent that around 70 police officials were reportedly deployed in the city to prevent water riots. It was reported by ANI that Himachal Pradesh High Court directed the Shimla Municipal Corporation not to distribute water through tankers to tackle the situation. The Shimla administration has also cancelled the Shimla Summer Festival (scheduled from June 1 to 5) due to the severe water crisis.
Shimla's tourism industry has been hit badly due to this unexpected crisis, and the locals are facing a bad year as the hospitality industry is unable to cope with this challenge. But do we really know how a famous hill station like Shimla reached this point? Here are five points that could have led to this acute water crisis in the queen of hills:
1. Pollution: A lot of tourists visit Shimla in their SUVs and cars that pollute the air and water in the hill stations.
2. Too many tourists: Though tourism generates the maximum revenue in Shimla, a large number of tourists can aggravate the demand for water. Since the hilltop city is already low on water supply, the locals are unable to supply water to everyone.
3. Unrestricted construction: In the name of development, humans end up destructing nature. Due to unplanned constructions and non-stop cutting down of the mountains, the natural water resources are depleting at a faster rate, and thus creating a dry spell.
4. Deforestation: Deforestation is no rocket science. Everybody needs to understands that if we continue cutting trees, there won't be any rains, and soon the underground water will be exhausted, too. This is what is happening in most hill stations, where the green cover is depleting and no trees are being planted to save the environment.
5. Lack of waste management: The toxic plastic and non-biodegradable waste accumulated in popular tourist destinations is one of the main reasons why natural disasters are most common in such places. If we don't clean the harmful garbage in hills, chances are that it might destroy the natural habitat from many floral and fauna and lead to natural disasters.
We really hope Shimla's crisis is averted soon, but for the rest of us this is a warning from nature that we just can't afford to ignore.