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IFPRI-Gendered Vulnerability in Flood Plains of West Champaran, Bihar-Pranita B. Udas and Anjal Prakash


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Gendered Vulnerability in Flood Plains of West Champaran, Bihar

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IFPRI-Gendered Vulnerability in Flood Plains of West Champaran, Bihar-Pranita B. Udas and Anjal Prakash

  1. 1. HI-AWARE Gendered Vulnerability in Flood Plains of West Champaran, Bihar Pranita B. Udas & Anjal Prakash ICIMOD Flood and Gender
  2. 2. Flood “an unusually high stage in a river – normally the level at which the river overflows its banks and inundates the adjoining area”. – hydrology text book A large amount of water covering an area that is usually dry – Cambridge dictionary “ when the water level rises affecting our life and livelihood assets’’- People living with flood
  3. 3. Flood, people and gender Before flood Preparedness During Flood After Flood Differential coping & adaptive capacity Differential capability & agency Differential Livelihood assets Gendered Vulnerability Location Patriarchy Historical inequity Biological differencesNorms Values Entitlement
  4. 4. Bihar: Farmers and flood Infrastructure and in/security >3732 km embankments along different rivers in Bihar (FMISC) Road construction and other infrastructure development Road expansion People and poverty State: 49.4 % below poverty line Rural Bihar: 55.7 % below poverty line (RBI) 1/7 of the poor in India is from Bihar Prevalence of underweight children under 5 : 56.1% Gender Development Index rank 35 out of 35 Flood and food 76 % live under recurring threat of flood devastation, 73.06 % land area is flood prone (FMISC) Agriculture -generates 16 % state GDP, but provides employment to 70 % of rural working force (Singh et al, 2011) Crop area loss due to 2007 flood was 16.08 lakh ha(Bansil, 2011)
  5. 5. Flood in Bihar in Figure
  6. 6. Participatory assessment on socioeconomic drivers and conditions leading to vulnerability – Participant observation – Identification of social stratifier of vulnerable group based on people’s perception – Interview and FGD with specific group Study in Bihar Methodology
  7. 7. Case study : Chharki, Bhagawanpur Panchayat, Nauten Block, West Champaran Hamlet of 106 hh living in old embankment, 100 house with bamboo wall –thatched roof, 6 has brickwall, thatched roof. Devasting flood in 1980 displaced the community from Bishambhapur, after that the community shifted to ten different places losing their land one after another in every rainy season. The recent flood in 2007, and then in 2013- families moved to new embankment for 3 months, as the current settlement was inundated
  8. 8. 2005 2010 2016
  9. 9. Some indicator: Loan per family increases with more daughters 0 50000 100000 150000 200000 250000 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 AmountofloaninIndian Currency Proportion of male to female Women are vulnerable not only water destroy their homes and livelihood assets, the social disparities and barriers to exercise their ability multiplies their vulnerability
  10. 10. Differential gender impact during flood Female are encouraged to stay in higher safe place to take care of children, but are at high risk due to issues on • Sanitation/ toilet, specially for women and children • Drinking water • Taking care of livestocks and children Men take risk to continue protecting bamboo houses not to allow them to collapse, as much as possible. A bamboo house cost INR 10000. Women without men hence either loose property or in risk to protect property The most vulnerable identified by the villager in the study area were the women headed households or households with only and more women.
  11. 11. Key issues Conditions • Gendered social hierarchy • Disparity in land ownership • Farming and labor as livelihood strategy Drivers • Regular flood and inundation • Embankment • Road construction • Untimely wage payment • Consumerism and dowry Living with flood
  12. 12. Key lessons Enhancing women’s assets and capability - Changing dominant gender barriers e.g. breaking the culture of dowry - Harvesting rain for drinking to meet immediate need- designing proper technology - Structure may be solution for one, but the reason for vulnerability for others- proper resettlement/social safety plan could secure life of women and children from ills of modern development that could be reason for flood.
  13. 13. Thank you Supported by the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) and Canada’s International Development Research Centre (IDRC)