Monday, June 17, 2024

Sindhi Women Win Historic Recognition in Water Management

A landmark amendment passed by the legislative assembly of the Sindh province acknowledged, for the first time, the role of female farmers in water management. The Sindh Water Management (Amendment) Bill, 2018 now guarantees the representation of women in over 45,000 associations of water courses, more than 350 farmer organizations, and 14 provincial water boards in the province. It’s been a long fight to make a historic change.

One of many men who requested a share of water in the ‘tail-end areas’ of the Sindh province was Dhani Bux, a farmer and advocate for effective water conservation in his district of Badin.

Bux and his fellow farmers have faced a significant water shortage over the last decade that has made their fertile lands in Badin and Thatta barren and spurred mass migration. He is the leader of the Badin Alliance District, established after legislation entitled the ‘Sindh Water Management Ordinance’ (SWMO) was passed in 2002 requiring the establishment of farmers’ organizations for the equal distribution of water at each distributary.

Women farmers such as Khatijan Ghirano, who owns 6 acres of land, were mostly elated. “Women can save more than men because we know the agricultural land very well and the water, water courses and distribution issues. We will find a way to solve these problems once we are part of the farmers’ organization,” she said.

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