Chikkamagaluru reels under severe drought

Chikkamagaluru reels under severe drought

Water bodies in district go dry, agriculture and cattle affected

The district is moving into a never-before state of water shortage.

Drought has taken a toll on the coffee, pepper, arecanut and coconut crops. All the water bodies, including borewells, have dried up. The residents have been depending on the water supplied through tankers. The rainfall in the recent days has, naturally, failed to come to the rescue of the standing crops. Owing to deficit south-west monsoon, the state government had declared Chikkamagaluru, Mudigere, Kadur and NR Pura taluks as drought-affected. Deficit north-east monsoon had led the state government to declared Chikkamagaluru, Koppa, Kadur, NR Pura and Tarikere as drought-hit taluks.

Shortfall in rain
From January 1 to December 31, 2016, the district should have received 1,757.1 mm rainfall. However, the district received only 1192.9 mm rainfall, thus 32% deficit. Kalasapura, Lakya, Ambale hobli, Kadur taluk received the lowest rainfall.

The farmers are struggling to save the livestock in the plateau region of Chikkamagaluru taluk and Kadur taluk. The Zilla Panchayat has already identified 484 villages suffering from drinking water shortage. If the region fails to get rainfall in the month of April and May, the number of villages affected with water crisis will double. Water crisis has been solved in 241 villages, utilising funds under various grants. Temporary arrangement has been made to supply water to 220 villages, while water is being supplied through tankers in 123 villages. Taluk panchayat members ask how people will survive if 15 pots of water are supplied to the citizens once in 15 days.

The cattle are facing acute shortage of fodder too in Chikkamagaluru, Kadur, Ajjampura and Shivani areas. Farmers feel that fodder is not being supplied effectively through fodder bank.

Cattle figures
The district administration gives statistics of 2012 census,  when there were 4,08446 buffaloes.
MLA C T Ravi said, “The officials are furnishing false details. I have six cattle in my house. Did the officials from the Animal Husbandry Department visit my house and collect information?”

District In-charge Minister Dr G Parameshwara has directed the officials to supply double the existing quota of fodder under drought relief measures.