Thanks to extensive irrigation, more than 80 percent of South Haryana’s land is cultivated, producing rich harvests of rice, oil seeds, barley, wheat, chickpeas and sugarcane. And irrigation is needed, because rainfall is sporadic. The region’s 9.5 million people work in a climate that can reach 118 degrees in the summer and drop to freezing in the winter. In addition, because part of the region is less than 20 miles from the Thar Desert, sandstorms are common.
Like other parts of India, the South Haryana Region is made up of multiple regions and people groups with their own distinct history. Because of its many temples, the Bhiwani district is considered another “Benares,” the holy city on the shore of the Ganges River.
Four major people groups live in the region, including the Jats, Gujars, Maharishi Balmiki and Chamars, each with their own occupations and castes.
South Haryana residents represent a diverse blend of cultures and religious beliefs.
This South Haryana woman is barely visible beneath her heavy load. The majority of South Haryana’s people live in small villages and work in agriculture.
This trailer, pulled by oxen and loaded with sugarcane, is headed to market. The harvesters are hitching a ride.