Drought and famine in India, 1870?2016

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dc.contributor.author Mishra, Vimal
dc.contributor.author Tiwari, Amar Deep
dc.contributor.author Aadhar, Saran
dc.contributor.author Shah, Reepal
dc.contributor.author Xiao, Mu
dc.contributor.author Pai, D. S.
dc.contributor.author Lettenmaier, Dennis P.
dc.date.accessioned 2019-06-19T11:12:54Z
dc.date.available 2019-06-19T11:12:54Z
dc.date.issued 2019-01
dc.identifier.citation Mishra, Vimal; Tiwari, Amar Deep; Aadhar, Saran; Shah, Reepal; Xiao, Mu; Pai, D. S. and Lettenmaier, Dennis, "Drought and famine in India, 1870?2016", Geophysical Research Letters, DOI: 10.1029/2018GL081477, Jan. 2019. en_US
dc.identifier.uri https://doi.org/10.1029/2018GL081477
dc.identifier.uri https://repository.iitgn.ac.in/handle/123456789/4457
dc.description.abstract Millions of people died due to famines in India in the 19th and 20th centuries; however, the relationship of historical famines with drought is complicated and not well understood. Using station?based observations and simulations, we reconstruct soil moisture (agricultural) drought in India for the period 1870?2016. We show that over this century and a half period, India experienced seven major drought periods (1876?1882, 1895?1900, 1908?1924, 1937?1945, 1982?1990, 1997?2004, and 2011?2015) based on severity?area?duration (SAD) analysis of reconstructed soil moisture. Out of six major famines (1873?74, 1876, 1877, 1896?97, 1899, and 1943) that occurred during 1870?2016, five are linked to soil moisture drought, and one (1943) was not. The three most deadly droughts (1877, 1896, and 1899) were linked with the positive phase of El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO). Five major droughts were not linked with famine, and three of those five non?famine droughts occurred after Indian Independence in 1947. Plain Language Summary India witnessed some of the most famous famines during the late 19th and early 20th century. These famines caused millions of deaths primarily due to widespread crop failure. However, the role of agricultural drought in these famines remains unrecognized. Using station based observations and simulations from a hydrological model, we reconstructed agricultural droughts and established a linkage between famines and droughts over India. We find that a majority of famines were caused by large?scale and severe soil moisture droughts that hampered the food production. However, one famine was completely resulted due to the failure of policy during the British Era. Expansion of irrigation, better public distribution system, rural employment, and transportation reduced the impact of drought on the lives of people after the independence.
dc.description.statementofresponsibility by Vimal Mishra, Amar Deep Tiwari, Saran Aadhar, Reepal Shah, Mu Xiao, D. S. Pai and Dennis Lettenmaier
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.publisher Wiley en_US
dc.subject Drought en_US
dc.subject India en_US
dc.subject Famine en_US
dc.subject Food Security en_US
dc.subject VIC en_US
dc.subject soil moisture en_US
dc.title Drought and famine in India, 1870?2016 en_US
dc.type Article en_US


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