Centre announces additional drought relief
In a bid to mitigate the hardships of the drought-hit populace, the Centre on Monday announced an additional relief of 6.34 lakh tonne foodgrains for next month.
The Task Force on Drought, which met under the Chairmanship of Deputy Prime Minister L K Advani, also sanctioned 40,000 tonnes of animal-grade foodgrains to be distributed to Gaushalas by the Animal Husbandry Department.
The foodgrains have to be utilised in July itself and have been sanctioned on the basis of demands made by states and their lifting of stocks in the past months, official sources said here.
A lion's share of 2.2 lakh tonnes has been allotted to Andhra Pradesh, followed by Gujarat (1.58 lakh tonnes), Tamil Nadu (one lakh tonne), Karnataka (55,000 tonnes), Madhya Pradesh (70,000 tonnes), Chhattisgarh (31,000 tonnes).
Upto June 26, nine drought affected states had utilised 55.82 lakh tonne grains against the allotted 79.17 lakh tonnes.
During the meeting, it was decided to extend the facility of free transport of fodder and drinking water to Rajasthan and Gujarat upto July 31 of this year.
The meeting was attended among others by Agriculture Minister Rajnath Singh who said with the onset of monsoon there has been considerable improvement in drought-hit areas.
As on June 23, sowing in the current season has already overtaken the normal acreage during the period. Upto June 22, 70 per cent of the planned grains movement for the month had already taken place.