Karnataka declares 195 taluks as drought-hit | Latest News India - Hindustan Times

Karnataka declares 195 taluks as drought-hit

By, Bengaluru
Sep 15, 2023 01:21 AM IST

The order on drought-hit taluks will be in force for a period of six months or until further orders from the state government.

The Karnataka government on Thursday declared 195 taluks in the state as drought-hit, owing to weak monsoon. Among them, it announced that 161 taluks have been declared as severely drought-hit and 34 taluks as moderately drought-hit.

Krishna Byre Gowda (HT Archives)
Krishna Byre Gowda (HT Archives)

According to government order, a memorandum will be submitted to the central government seeking relief for the drought situation prevailing in the state, that has a total of 236 taluks in 31 districts. The order on drought-hit taluks will be in force for a period of six months or until further orders from the state government.

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“As per National Disaster Response Force ([NDRF] and State Disaster Response Fund [SDRF] guidelines, 195 taluks in the state have been declared as drought-hit. A memorandum will be submitted to the central government to provide drought relief to these 195 taluks,” chief minister Siddaramaiah said on Thursday.

The government order further stated that monsoon arrival was delayed by about a week in June in Karnataka and the rainfall in June was at 56% deficit than in normal rainfall years.

However, rainfall improved in July and the state recorded 29% excess rainfall. Again, weak monsoon prevailed over the state in August, recording a deficit rainfall of about 73% than that of normal years. The poor rainfall in August in Karnataka was the lowest rainfall recorded in the last 125 years, the order said.

The taluks that have been announced as severe drought-hit include Bengaluru East, Devanahalli, Doddaballapura, Hosakote and Nelamangala.

The order was issued a day after the cabinet sub-committee on disaster management concluded that as many as 195 taluks in the state are drought-hit, and submitted its recommendation to the government.

Revenue minister Krishna Byre Gowda, who heads the cabinet sub-committee, said on Wednesday that the crop survey has been conducted across the state for the past one week and as per the central guidelines, Karnataka has 161 taluks suffering from severe drought. “Besides, in another 34 taluks, there is moderate drought and these taluks have also been included in the list, even though central government may or may not provide grants to taluks under this category,” the revenue minister said.

“There is a shortage of more than 40% of rainfall in the Malnad [hilly] region. There is a shortage of rain in the Cauvery catchment area and a similar situation exists in the interior regions of the state,” he said.

A crop survey would be conducted in 40 taluks after 15 days. If they fall into the category of drought-prone areas, they would also be included in the list, Gowda added.

Gowda further stated that preparations have already been made for the formation of a task force in each taluk. “Also, after the drought is declared, the 100 man-days under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act [MGNREGA] will be increased to 150 days.”

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