Lisari is a village in Uttar Pradesh, India’s most populous state. Seven years ago 450 families moved into three new developments in the village, but the people who sold them the land didn’t provide a grid connection, and seven years on they still don’t have electricity.
This has had a devastating impact on every aspect of daily life.
When she arrived in Lisari, Ruksana, 30, brought all the electrical equipment a home would need: a fridge, lighting, a TV and fans – essential in India’s searing heat. But the fans lie idle and the fridge is currently being used as a cupboard to store her clothes.
Mohd Sabir, 42, told the Times of India that his three-year-old son died of fever and vomiting in the searing summer heat. Mohd Mukammil, 26, says that his wife, left him, telling him that he had to choose between the village and her.
Education has also suffered, with Sahiba, 16, telling reporters: “I will have to stay up at night to prepare for my board exams, but in the absence of electricity I have to manage with torches and candles.”
Now the residents have put for sale signs outside their homes and are threatening to leave.
Sadly, these experiences are not unusual in a country in which around 300 million people still lack access to electricity. It’s why India’s government has made power for all a top priority.
For the residents of Lisari, a connection to the grid can’t come a moment too soon. Lives, marriages and jobs all depend on it.