Nation Politics 02 Mar 2017 Drought in Kerala ca ...

Drought in Kerala causes Rs 225 crore loss to crops

DECCAN CHRONICLE.
Published Mar 2, 2017, 6:21 am IST
Updated Mar 2, 2017, 7:30 am IST
As per figures on January 17, reservoirs have only 44 percent water. Underground water level has dropped by 2-2.5 metres.
E Chandrasekharan
 E Chandrasekharan

Thiruvananthapuram: Revenue minister E Chandrasekharan has painted a grim picture of the drought situation in the state. He said that already 30,353.06 hectares of agricultural land have been destroyed by drought, which according to him could be the “worst in the century”. He estimated the loss to be worth Rs 225 crore. Paddy was the worst hit, with 26,499.42 hectares destroyed. Paddy losses, the minister said was worth Rs 106 crore.

The minister was making a statement under Rule 300 in the Assembly on Wednesday regarding the steps taken by the government to face the scarcity of drinking water and crop destruction due to severe drought. Finding that the farmers have been the worst hit, the state had announced a moratorium till May 31, 2017, on all loans taken by farmers.

 

As per figures on January 17, reservoirs have only 44 percent water. Underground water level has dropped by 2-2.5 metres. “This is a grave situation,” the minister said. He said Rs 29.5 crore had been disbursed to districts to tackle drinking water problems. As part of measures to improve water availability, 5698 borewells have been revived. However, restrictions have been clamped on the digging of borewells for commercial purposes. Almost 9453 ponds have been revived using Rs 320 crore, he said.

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