Shortage of electricity is a major reason behind mass migration into Delhi.
Unless political leaders address the issue with utmost honesty, things are unlikely to change. And why do I think so?
Well, let me ask you a question.
Are you a Delhite who constantly complains about:
- Overcrowded Delhi Metro
- Jam-packed DTC buses
- Illegal parking on the roads
- The tussle over drinking water and stuff like that?
You see, Delhi has turned into one of the most crowded cities in the country, and also one of the most polluted cities in the world. A major chunk of Delhi’s population is of migrants from other states. Mainly from the NCR and neighboring states.
And there’s a genuine reason behind it, which is…
Shortage of Electricity
Let me give some context.
I belong to Muzaffarnagar (Lakshminagar), Western Uttar Pradesh.
You see, my region is one of the most prosperous areas in Uttar Pradesh(thanks to the cash crop, sugarcane). And yet, the present situation of its villages is worrisome. The thing is: A major portion of the population depends upon farming. And farming used to be a respectable thing. But it’s now a thing of the past.
Villages used to glow with happiness and joy because the youth had no intention of abandoning their homes and migrating to the cities. Life was slow-paced, content, and basically, good.
And then came the “Information Age.”
The internet and social media made the youth aware of better employment opportunities in cities. As time passed, agriculture became a profession not to look forward to. It turned into something to run away from, something to be dreaded.
The fact of the matter is: Most of my childhood companions have migrated to Delhi or some other city. I know there are various other factors behind the migration, but a primary reason is the shortage of electricity.
The thing is, most of the villages in my area receive only 6-7 hours of power supply, and that too is uncertain. Quite often, the villages are forced to do without electricity for 4-5 days in a row.
Shortage of Electricity and Its Implications
Can you imagine a life without electricity today?
Well, the village folk are not as lucky as you. There are many implications of not having a proper power supply. Here are some.
You cannot study when you need to.
There’s no option but to eat food in the dark.
One cannot sleep peacefully in summer because fans stand still without electricity.
(I mean, for how long can one use the hand-fans anyway? You can either keep the hand fan in momentum or you can sleep—you can’t handle both simultaneously.)
And bearing scorching heat has its repercussions. I recently saw a small baby having heat rashes on her entire body in Faizallapur village in Baghpat. It was a horrible sight.
Now, we all know that farming relies heavily on irrigation. And guess what? Since we don’t have a dependable power supply, the farmers are in limbo most of the time, especially in summer, which, ultimately affects crops. And not only that, you cannot even think of setting up your own business, big or small. Because most of the trades and businesses require electricity to run.
And that’s exactly what happened to one fellow in my village.
A Young Tailor Left His Village Because of Lack of Power
I know a young talented tailor in my village who stitches wonderful clothes. Every time I met him, he asked me if I could help him get some tailoring work in Delhi.
Surprised, I asked him why he wanted to leave the village and work in Delhi.
“Brother, I want to grow my work, but here, in the village, I cannot even imagine that. Our village gets a power supply for only 6-7 hours a day, and there are times when there’s no power supply for 4-5 days in a row. I need to iron clothes after stitching and the unavailability of electricity causes unnecessary delays. Many of my customers complain, and I am losing business. I want to leave. Can’t take it anymore!”
The next time I visited his house, he was gone. His family members said that he’s now working as a laborer in a garment export factory in Uttarakhand.
Now you tell me, isn’t that ironic? A young fellow had to leave his village, his home, and his children because the government didn’t take an interest in improving the power supply.
And this is just one story; there are thousands of such tales buried in the villages of Western Uttar Pradesh.
The shortage of electricity is forcing people to leave their homes.
And the result?
You’re seeing it with your own eyes. Cities are getting crowded by the day.
Go to any village in Western UP, and you’ll find many homes either vacant or half-vacant, and the situation is going down the hill every year.
People are abandoning villages, and cities are getting overcrowded because of the shortage of electricity.