Water Crisis in the Rangamati Hill District of Bangladesh: A Case Study on Indigenous Community


  • Swarnali Chakma Graduate School of International Cooperation Studies, Kobe University, Japan




Water Crisis, Climate Change, Adaptation, Indigenous community, Chittagong Hill Tracts


The ethnic communities are the most underprivileged and exposed areas in Bangladesh's Chittagong hill tracts. Since the last decade, these areas have been facing severe challenges from climate change, such as drought leading to water scarcity, prolonged rainfall triggering landslides, dry-up of watersheds due to lack of rain, soil erosion, etc. This research aims to identify the key indicators of the causes and consequences of the water crisis caused by climate change and traditional water scarcity adoption practices in terms of sustainable upland water management. However, semi-structured and Key Informant Interviews were conducted following open-ended questionnaires in the Rangamati district. The study found that the locals in this region have few pure drinking water sources and often rely on nearby springs and lakes. It has also been discovered that rising deforestation is drying up the waterways. About 44% of the community states that deforestation is the main reason for the water crisis. According to the community, the situation gets worse during the dry season. The study results also show that women face difficulties because they are more likely to collect water for their family members and carry out their daily activities. Future studies should examine various mitigation strategies that are feasible for implementation locally, with a focus on expanding forest cover and afforestation, which could raise the groundwater level and improve the availability of water in the mountainous region. Finally, the findings can assist policymakers, practitioners, and the government in developing policies to benefit this community soon.


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How to Cite

Chakma, S. (2023). Water Crisis in the Rangamati Hill District of Bangladesh: A Case Study on Indigenous Community. International Journal of Disaster Risk Management, 5(2), 29–44. https://doi.org/10.18485/ijdrm.2023.5.2.3