Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Raging Water Wars

First of all let me tell you guys, the original inspiration for writing this article came from a documentary video, For The Love of Water(FLOW). Flow is a true eye opener, i never knew privatization of water is happening in our country. It is not just happening, but more and more states and adopting water privatization initiatives, which brings us the obvious question, Whose water is it anyway?

For those who think, privitization of Water is good since it brings in a lot of efficiency and accounting into the otherwise corrupt system prevalent in our country, let me tell you, i used to think like the same, NOT ANYMORE. Privitization of essential resources is bad and should be avoided at any cost.

The kind of exploitation by big corporates like Suez, Vivendi, Nestle or Coca Cola in countries like Bolivia, South Africa and even USA(Watch FLOW) are in front of us. Consider what happened in Bolovia. A subsidiary of American company Betchel took over the control of Water distribution in 1999 and slowly increased water rates manifold and disconnected Water supply to those who cannot pay. This led to violent protests all over the country and finally Betchel was evicted from Bolivia in April 2000.

We all know what happened in Plachimada, Kerala. A BBC report says, the substance given away by Coca Cola as pesticide to the poor farmers around was actually toxic industrial waste. That is atricious. Let us don't make the same mistake again.

But guess what, our babus who are otherwise slow(if not crawl) in accepting changes are quick to accept privatization of our precious water resources. Multinational Water giants like Suez, Vivendi et al is already active in places like Delhi. Officially 19 privatization projects are already underway in India, but unofficial numbers put the figure at around 40. Scary isn't it?

Here is an insightful article on privatization of water in India
And i strongly recommend everyone to watch FLOW


  1. Dear Manuel,

    Good to see your post on water privatisation. Infact if u look at the number of privatised water projects in India u will be amazed to see the numbers and the of course, the interest of the private corps. in this sector. My organnisation has been working on water privatisation issues since long in India and we have done quite a few studies on this social issue. For more information on such please see - www.manthan-india.org. Please do let us know what u feel on this and if u need any more information on this subject. My official email is - manthan.kendra@gmail.com.

    Thank you,

    warm regards,
    Gaurav Dwivedi

  2. True. Privatisation of essential resources is not going to lead us anywhere.
    Good research you have done there and well written.
    Keep writing.

  3. @Gaurav
    After browsing through your site i realised, what i knew about water privatisation in India is just tip of a huge ice berg. Keep up the good work. May be i should write a more elaborate blog on this. :-)
    Thank you. You are probably the only one who reads my every post. :D Thanks for that, and you too keep writing. \m/