Sunderbans, the world’s largest mangrove forest area offers a unique ecosystem with 105 islands, with about half of them being reserve forest. It hosts 4 million people in an area of about 10,000 sq. m.The key challenges facing Sunderbans include natural calamities, poor infrastructure, lack of drinking water, rapid soil erosion, over fishing in rivers, lack of industry, limited skills due to limited opportunities, seasonal migration, gender inequality, lack of quality education and many more.
Some Human Development Indicators
• 85% are land holding farmers
• 87% of them have less than 1 hec land holding
• More than 60% live below poverty level = 1 dollar/day
• More than 50% of the children are chronically under nourished
• More than 30% of the women are under weight
• Children’s mortality (less than 5 years) is as high as 10%