“God has cared for these trees,

saved them from drought, disease, avalanches, and a thousand

tempests and floods. But he cannot

save them from fools.”

–John Muir – 1901

A prolonged shortage of water and rainfall, or a drought, is not an anomaly in Pakistan, especially in the subtropical desert areas of Balochistan and Sindh. In some cases, the drought has been so severe that it has led to famine-like situations. Possibly the worst was that of 1998 – 2002. An extreme lack of rain led to 1.2 million Balochis being affected and the displacement of 60% of Sindh’s population with nearly 130 deaths in the Tharparkar region alone. The situation was only improved after heavy rainfall in Sindh in 2003 and government experiments of artificial rain in Balochistan.

However, the extreme conditions continued to re-appear and as recent as 2014-5, Tharparkar was near famine due to another persisting drought. This caused widespread death of livestock, severe malnourishment in children and mass immigrations.