The Aftermath of Natural Disasters in Sundarbans

  • March 28, 2023
  • Jennifer Moore
The Aftermath of Natural Disasters in Sundarbans

PayBitoPro has recently launched its ‘Brokering World Hunger Away’ movement, with the aim to alleviate hunger in the World. Global hunger is a serious issue, with millions of people surviving on one-time meals a day. PayBitoPro embarked on its journey starting from the largest delta islands located in the Southwestern part of Asia. While the UNESCO-listed World Heritage Site of Sundarbans is popular for its biodiversity, the islanders are under constant threat of climate-induced migration due to frequent natural disasters.

PaybitoPro Observes Shocking Several Problems

On its mission to end hunger, PayBitoPro was shocked to observe the several problems of the inhabitants of Sundarbans, that led to poverty, hunger, unemployment, lack of quality education, and several other problems. PayBitoPro has previously addressed the issue of climate change in Sundarbans.

While the inhabitants of Sundarbans are battling natural disasters due to climate change, can they outrun a river? According to Climate Central’s report of 2019, the islands of Sundarbans will be flooded by 2050. To improve the livelihood of the villagers in the Sundarbans, PayBitoPro visited the flood-stricken regions to highlight the unheard stories of survival from the islands.

Amphan’s Fury Leaves Ayesha Homeless: The Survival Story of a Refugee

Did you know that in the last twenty-five years, the sea level of Sundarbans is rising at an alarming rate? In the past 23 years, Sundarbans faced thirteen deadly supercyclones that have ripped apart trees, and houses, with thousands of death. Several islands are already underwater due yo natural disasters, and others are at a high risk of sinking. PayBitoPro team traveled to several islands including Sagar island to address the refugees. Here’s the story of Ayesha, the widow who lost her husband and son in Amphan, and is now living as a refugee.

“We saved up for years, to build a house we could call home in Ghoramara, Sundarbans. My house was half built when the islands were hit by Amphan. The heavy rainfall, and flood destroyed my house. My husband and son have swept away in the flood, leaving me a widow with my elder son.” 

– Ayesha Khatoon (refugee Sagar islands, Sundarbans)

Ayesha Khatoon, a resident of Ghoramara in Sundarbans, had been saving for years to build a home for herself and her family. Unfortunately, her dream of a comfortable dwelling was shattered when the catastrophic Amphan struck the islands. Her house, which was still under construction, was destroyed by the heavy rain and flood brought by the storm. Tragically, Ayesha’s husband and son have swept away in the deluge, leaving her to care for her remaining child as a widow.

Ayesha is Living as a Refugee

In the aftermath of the disaster, Ayesha was forced to flee to Sagar Islands. She is now living as a refugee. The situation is dire for Ayesha and others like her. The ones who have lost everything and are struggling to survive in a new and unfamiliar place. The loss of her home and family members has left Ayesha in a vulnerable and precarious position, and she is desperately in need of assistance to rebuild her life.

Natural Disasters in Sundarbans

“In the past years, we have faced four major supercyclones, the Fani and Bulbul in 2019, Amphan in 2020, and Yaas in 2021. Amphan took away my husband and child, along with our house. It was the deadliest one, which destroyed several houses. While many of us are living as a refugee, others migrated to the cities taking up awkward jobs of domestic help, and daily wagers in industries.”

The Sundarbans, face multiple hits by natural disasters and supercyclones in recent years. The region has faced four major supercyclones – Fani and Bulbul in 2019, Amphan in 2020, and Yaas in 2021. The most deadly of them all was Amphan, which not only destroyed several homes but also claimed the lives of many residents, including the loved ones of Ayesha Khatoon.

As a result of these devastating storms, many people in the Sundarbans were left homeless. Ayesha is just one of the countless individuals to flee their homes. Some have been able to find shelter on other islands. While others have been forced to migrate to cities in search of work. However, even those who have managed to find work in urban areas were forced to take up menial jobs. Such as domestic help or daily wage labor, to make ends meet.

The repeated natural disasters have had a profound impact on the lives of the people of Sundarbans. Thereafter, causing immense hardship and suffering. The struggle to rebuild their lives remains a daunting challenge for many.

Sundarbans: A Race Against Time to Save Its Disappearing Islands

“Without any proper action against climate change, by 2050 the forty million people residing in Sundarbans will be forced to migrate to other countries.”

 – Groundwell Report 2018

The impact of climate change could result in the displacement of millions of people residing in the Sundarbans region by 2050 if no one addresses the issue. The report highlights the vulnerability of the Sundarbans region to the effects of climate change, such as rising sea levels, increased salinity, and more frequent extreme weather events like cyclones and flooding. These changes could have significant impacts on the region’s ecology, as well as the lives and livelihoods of the people who live there.

Islands Hanging by a Thread

Several islands such as Kapasgadi, Lohachara, and Suparibhanga in Sundarbans are hanging by a thread to sink. The Island of Ghoramara which was once inhabited by around forty thousand people is on the verge of sinking. Today, the island only has two thousand villagers left who are constantly in a battle with nature to survive. Several villagers like Ayesha, have taken refuge in the nearby Sagar islands. However, even the Sagar islands are not safe from the wrath of cyclones and are now on the risk radar of disappearance. 

If the predictions are accurate, it is a cause for concern not only for the people of the Sundarbans but also for the global community. There is still time to take action to mitigate the effects of frequent natural disasters and avoid the worst-case scenarios. Governments, businesses, and individuals can take steps to reduce their carbon footprint, transition to cleaner sources of energy, and support initiatives that protect vulnerable communities from the effects of climate change.

“I might not survive until the day comes. But, what about my children, what will happen to them? It is like the world is ending for us.”

There are several other people like Ayesha, residing as refugees. Even in the Sagar islands, the residents are under constant threat. PayBitoPro team interviewed a fisherman Raju, who is a resident of the island. His story shook us.

Raju Naskar Lost Everything

“In the last ten years, we have rebuilt our house four times. We have lost all our savings. With every tidal surge, the wave takes away a part of us. Over the years, the river has grown four-fold, and is on a constant chase.”

 – Raju Naskar ( a resident of Sagar Islands, Sundarbans)

Within a half-kilometer stretch of Raju’s house, more than forty families lost their houses and land to the river. Over the years, the river has come inland about a thousand feet, taking away lives. There are several families who have migrated to the cities, or even other states due to unemployment, and the constant battle to keep themselves alive. Sundarbans, with its rising sea levels and struggling economy, will become a climate migration hotspot in the years to come.

Mangroves: Nature’s Shield Against Climate Change! But, Is It Helping?

A report by the World Wildlife Fund in 2011 and by the World Bank in 2014 suggests a “planned retreat” of the population and regeneration of mangroves. The report highlights the uselessness of in-situ adaptation modes. Such as embankments in the long run. Moreover, it predicts that the delta will face insurmountable challenges in coping with predicted changes. Particularly with population growth and climate change impacts. 

“I worked in the forest department to plant over 10,000 mangrove seedlings on the river banks. However, before they could grow the tidal surges wiped away all the plants.” – Raju Naskar

The mangroves that once acted as a defense against climate change in the Sundarbans are disappearing. As rising sea levels weaken their tangled roots. The construction of dams in the Brahmaputra and Ganga basin destroys the ecosystem. It was also responsible for reducing fresh water and sediment supply.

Strategies for PayBitoPro to Help Villagers Fight The Losing Battle

PayBitoPro has launched the ‘Brokering World Hunger Away‘ movement with the aim to put an end to global hunger. The customizable crypto broker platform caters to individual brokers, institutional investors, and entrepreneurs looking to enter the crypto industry. The platform can kickstart your business in less than three minutes and can be a great source of passive income.

What’s more? By signing up for the platform and earning commissions, investors can directly contribute to the ‘Brokering World Hunger Away’ movement. PayBitoPro’s initiative, the “Dollar for a dollar” movement, ensures that for every dollar earned as a commission from the platform, an equal amount will be spent in the movement. This allows investors to contribute to the community and help end global hunger with zero investment or risk.

PayBitoPro’s Upcoming Strategies to Help Sundarbans

PayBitoPro can help villagers fight natural disasters in Sundarbans and keep them from migrating by implementing the following strategies:

  • Promote Sustainable Farming: PayBitoPro worked with local NGOs and agricultural experts to educate farmers on sustainable farming practices that can help them adapt to changing climate conditions.
  • Provide Renewable Energy: PayBitoPro invested in renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, and hydropower to provide clean energy to communities. This helped to reduce dependence on fossil fuels.
  • Implement Water Conservation Strategies: PayBitoPro worked with local communities to implement water conservation strategies such as rainwater harvesting, water recycling, and efficient irrigation techniques.
  • Regenerate Mangroves: PayBitoPro collaborated with local NGOs and communities to regenerate mangroves and protect the coastlines.

Looking Forward

On their mission to end hunger, PayBitoPro came across some of the harsh realities of Sundarbans. Sex trafficking, lack of quality education, man vs animal conflicts, dropout rates, poor menstrual hygiene, climate change, and climate-led migrations. PayBitoPro’s initiative helped the inhabitants of Sundarbans fight the river, and face the wrath of natural disasters. While it may not change the force of nature, it can help the villagers to put up a strong fight. Join the fight with PayBitoPro by joining its ‘Crypto Broker Platform’ today.

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