INDIA: A Crippling Shortage

At this time every year, Indian farmers begin to eye their sun-scorched fields and await the life-giving monsoon rains of June and July. After two years of below-normal precipitation, manufacturers and power-plant managers are waiting for the rain just as anxiously. Only a heavy monsoon can help to alleviate the crippling shortage of electric power that is aggravating India's many industrial and agricultural agonies.

Hydroelectric plants generate 40% of India's electricity, but they are running slowly now. Last winter's rain was low, and snow fell only lightly in the Himalayas, where the great rivers of north...

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