A landslide in western India that has killed more than 100 people and left scores missing may have been a man-made disaster caused by deforestation to make way for farming, experts say.
The Human Impact
Prakash Kabra recites his elder brother’s mobile number and I carefully tap it into my phone – already knowing the response, but still with a naïve sense of hope.
I didn’t sleep a wink that night.
It poured and poured and didn’t seem to let up. I could hear it crashing down relentlessly. It was so loud that I had to get out of bed to check whether the window of my hotel room was open. It wasn’t.
What many journalists and aid workers say is true – it is only in times of crisis, such as disasters and war, that you observe the best and worst of humanity.
It’s that “Will they? Won’t they?” time of year in India. The annual monsoon season is due and – given that the country’s mostly rain-fed agriculture makes up 15 percent of gross domestic product, with hundreds of millions of Indians dependent on it – these rains are a serious business.
In early March, I visited two refugee camps along the Thai-Myanmar border to report on the challenges facing refugee women and girls and was struck by the enthusiasm of students I met in Ban Mae Surin, a camp set in a remote but picturesque setting along the Mae Surin river.
India is increasingly seen as an important player when it comes to supporting nations hit by disasters or conflict, as well as for development, but given its size and influence, is it really doing enough to help resolve global crises?