CDM | Centre for Disaster Management (Haryana Institute of Public Administration)


Haryana state is considered the breadbasket of India, along with the Punjab state. The effects of drought (and mitigation of those effects) are therefore of considerable importance for the state. This article considers the state’s drought “profile” through a study of six drought years in Haryana.

The main problems with agricultural drought in this region are erratic rainfall; poor soil fertility; and limited, poor-quality irrigation water. Image 1. shows rainfall amounts and crops cultivated in the droughtprone districts of Haryana. Invariably, bajra, jowar, and maize crops are grown in the drought-prone districts in the monsoon season, whereas wheat, barley, mustard, and gram are grown with irrigation during the winter season. These winter-season crops are called rabi crops.

Do's and Don't
Do's and Don't

Indoor Water Conservation Tips While in a Drought

  • Avoid flushing the toilet unnecessarily. Dispose of tissues, insects, and other similar waste in the trash rather than the toilet.
  • Avoid taking baths—take short showers—turn on water only to get wet and lather and then again to rinse off.
  • Avoid letting the water run while brushing your teeth, washing your face or shaving.
  • Place a bucket in the shower to catch excess water for watering plants.

  • Operate automatic dishwashers only when they are fully loaded. Use the "light wash" feature, if available, to use less water.
  • Hand wash dishes by filling two containers—one with soapy water and the other with rinse water containing a small amount of chlorine bleach.
  • Clean vegetables in a pan filled with water rather than running water from the tap.
  • Store drinking water in the refrigerator. Do not let the tap run while you are waiting for water to cool.
  • Avoid wasting water waiting for it to get hot. Capture it for other uses such as plant watering or heat it on the stove or in a microwave.
  • Avoid rinsing dishes before placing them in the dishwasher; just remove large particles of food. (Most dishwashers can clean soiled dishes very well, so dishes do not have to be rinsed before washing)
  • Avoid using running water to thaw meat or other frozen foods. Defrost food overnight in the refrigerator or use the defrost setting on your microwave oven.

  • Operate automatic clothes washers only when they are fully loaded or set the water level for the size of your load.


Decision-makers in any enterprise that depends on water need to be prepared for drought. This would include:

  • farming, ranching, rural communities, vendors
  • municipal water suppliers
  • wildfire managers
  • environmental organizations, advocates and agencies
  • public health specialists
  • hydropower producers
  • industry, including producers of biofuels
  • tourism and recreation operators
  • state, local and tribal governments, and any regional resource management entities

  • A first step in any drought-planning effort is to assemble a team of relevant decision-makers and stakeholders.

    Key questions that the team needs to answer are:

  • "How will drought affect us?" Looking at past drought impacts helps people understand their vulnerability to drought.
  • "How will we recognize the next drought in the early stages?" Understanding what data are available and collecting more, if necessary, are key. This is part of monitoring and early warning.
  • "How can we protect ourselves from the next drought?" The answer to this will vary tremendously depending on the enterprise.