Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday directed the Agriculture and Farmer Empower Department to implement contingency crop plan with possible drought looming over 68% blocks of the State.
Reviewing possible drought condition here, Mr. Patnaik said, “As of now 213 of 314 blocks have recorded scanty rainfall. The department must monitor the situation on daily basis. Besides, Collectors should take action to mitigate the crisis by making field visits.”
He laid emphasis on coordinated action on the implementation of the contingency plan, flowing of water in canals and execution of the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme works.
The CM also directed to provide seeds and mini-kits for the second crop in the event of crop failure and supply diesel pump sets to the farmers at concessional price to save the present crop.
Moreover, officials have been instructed to dig ponds in agricultural land measuring half acre or more. All lift irrigation projects should be made operational after their repair within seven days. Share-croppers and small farmers should be encouraged to take up livelihood generation works.
Chief Secretary Suresh Chandra Mohapatra said the State has recorded 30% deficit rainfall. Though paddy crop was affected due to the prolonged dry spell, the non-paddy crop might not be affected.
Normal rainfall in September
H.R. Biswas of the Bhubaneswar Meteorological Centre said normal rainfall of 227.8 mm is likely in September. Except Khordha, Jagatsingpur, Koraput and Malkangiri districts, other 26 districts have recorded deficient rainfall of 20% or above.
Jajpur remained the worst affected district with 55% less rainfall during the current monsoon.