Central team visits drought-hit areas

The central drought study team members on Sunday visited drought-hit areas in Chikkamagaluru taluk to assess the damage caused to Rabi crops.

A team led by Department of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmers Welfare additional secretary Jalaj Shrivastava visited Yagachi Reservoir to assess water availability. They also visited Kalasapura which is reeling under water crisis and collected information on water shortage, fodder and loss of Rabi crops.

Farmers said officials have been furnishing wrong information to the team. “The authorities are releasing one barrel water per week. With meagre water can we sustain our livestock? With the failure of monsoon, we sowed maize. Without rain, the crops have been completely damaged. However, the authorities are not considering maize for compensation for loss of crops,” they said.

DC G Satyavathi and ZP CEO Dr R Ragapriya tried to convince the farmers that the team has been given real picture of water crisis.

The team visited fodder bank and Kalasapura and directed animal husbandry department officials to maintain transparency in the distribution of fodder. However, farmers expressed displeasure at the failure of the district administration to purchase quality fodder. Fodder is not being supplied as per the requirment, said the farmers. The team also examined dried arecanut and coconut plantations. After listening to the water crisis woes in Kalasapura, the team left for next village visit.

The team comprised NITI Ayog research officer Anuradha, Central Irrigation Commission superintendent engineer V Mohan Murali, Ministry of Finance director Sachdev.

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