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Drought situation worsening in Karnataka: Govt

Bengaluru: Sounding the alarm bells, the Karnataka government today said the drought situation in the state has worsened with deficit rainfall and water storage in dams being low.

“Drought situation has worsened and in the wake of this we have already met the Prime Minister and informed him through a memorandum that there is a loss of over Rs 11,000 crore and asked for assistance,” Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister T B Jayachandra told reporters here.

The situation was going out of control, he said, adding, 135 taluks in 27 districts have been declared drought-hit.

“There is shortage of water in reservoirs, and supply of drinking water has become an issue,” he said.

Pointing out to deficit rainfall, Jayachandra said as on August 31 distribution of rainfall is in “minus” figures in almost all districts.

“There is shortage of water in reservoirs…There is 50per cent water…Probably such a situation has not arisen in the last 44 years. This deficit rainfall will naturally result in creating many other problems,” he said.

He said the priority was to ensure drinking water supply.

On the power supply situation, Jayachandra hinted that the state will have to brace for load shedding.

“The state has an installed capacity of 10,189 MW; the present availability is only 6,600 to 7,300 MW. This has led to power shortage,” he said.

In Bengaluru itself load shedding should be for about two hours; in other places also there would be power cut, he said.

He also said the state government has decided to recommend release of 253 life convicts, including two women, from jail on grounds of “good conduct”.
These include 64 cases of those who had served imprisonment of 14 years without remission. The others had served 14 years of imprisonment with remission.