One of the biggest and most-visited cities in southern India, Chennai, is facing a severe water shortage for the third successive year, affecting the hospitality sector.

After three years of poor monsoon rain, increased urbanisation and the absence of year-round bodies of water, the drought has led to the largest sources of drinking water becoming bone dry. Most hotels are rationing water, even using banana leaves as plates, and the state government has announced a daily water train to bring water back to Chennai.

Almost 8,000 hotels in the category of small, medium and large hotels operate in the city and its suburbs, with most of the almost 5 million foreign tourists to Tamil Nadu are from the US, the UK, France, Germany and Spain.

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