The government on Tuesday declared 86 taluks spread across 23 districts as drought-hit following deficient rainfall.
A cabinet sub-committee on disaster management headed by Revenue Minister R V Deshpande which met in Bengaluru identified the taluks based on the 2016 guidelines notified by the Centre to declare a region as drought-hit.
Addressing a press conference after the meeting, Deshpande said the taluks received below average rainfall during the southwest monsoon (kharif) since June this year.
Most of the taluks are in North Interior Karnataka comprising the districts of Kalaburagi, Raichur, Yadgir, Bagalkot, Ballari, Vijayapura among others. Several taluks in the districts of Chikkaballapur, Tumakuru, Chitradurga and Mandya have also been declared drought-hit.
The guidelines stipulate that a taluk can be declared drought-hit if there is 60% deficient rainfall, a continuous dry spell for more than three weeks and a minimum of 33% crop loss.
He said Sindhanur in Raichur district was the taluk most severely hit by drought. Crop loss during kharif due to drought is estimated at Rs 8,000 crore.
While sowing should have taken place in 74.69 lakh hectares, it had happened in only 62.88 lakh hectares, he pointed out.
A joint survey of the drought-hit taluks will be conducted by the revenue, agriculture, horticulture and sericulture departments, following which a memorandum will be submitted to the Centre for grants from the National Disaster Relief Fund.
He said the government would release Rs 50 lakh for each taluk and also ensure there was no scarcity of drinking water and fodder.
The minister said two central teams will visit flood-hit districts in the state from Wednesday to assess the damage. While one team will visit Kodagu, the other will visit the districts of Udupi, Dakshina Kannada and Hassan. The two teams will hold discussions with top government officials on their return to Bengaluru on September 14.
Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy and a ministerial delegation had met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi on Monday and sought an immediate release of Rs 2,000 crore central package for rehabilitation of affected persons and rebuilding of infrastructure in the affected areas. The state has pegged the loss at Rs 3,706 crore due the floods.