Maharashtra’s Drought : Rising Unemployment as Industries Close Down.

Maharashtra, which is considered one of India’s top states for the industrial sector, has recorded a closure of 72,589 medium scale enterprises at the end of May 2015. Three lakh employees have become umemployed as a result of a considerable economic slowdown and unexpected changes in the market conditions.

Moreover, forecasting a major drought, the government has stopped the supply of water to several industrial units, mostly affecting water-based industries. As a result of this, companies have decided to halt production.

The Maharashtra state has received low rainfall for the past four years. The state faces acute scarcity of rain even in 2015. Hence, the government has decided to store water primarily for drinking and utility purposes. According to an officer, the water based industries have decided to close down until the next rainfall.

The Maharashtra government had set up the Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation to help boost industries in the rural areas. Under this scheme, some large scale industries were given concession on water, electricity and land. However, the industrial sector, which enjoyed prosperity until 1980, has been suffering major losses due to expansion of urbanization leading to rising prices of land in industrial cities such as Mumbai and Thane. This has also resulted in closing down of several industries.

Banks have not been able to sanction loans because of a lack of planning by the industrial sector. There are a total of 2,29,282 medium scale enterprises with an investment of 54,212 crores and employ 2,82,02,027 people.

The above information is from Pudhari Newspaper, Mumbai Edition, 8th September 2015.