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Recommend Rs 2,514 Cr drought: CS asks Central team

Telangana State Government today urged the Centre to provide a financial assistance of Rs 2,514 crore towards drought relief as it had already made an appeal.

Chief Secretary Dr Rajiv Sharma showcased the drought affected areas to Central team at a meeting held in Haritha Plaza here. The Chief Secretary apprised Union Agriculture Joint Secretary Uthpal Kumar Singh and his team of officials who came from Delhi to assess the drought loss in the state. Speaking on the occasion, Rajiv Sharma said that 231 mandals were drought-hit in the state due to low rainfall, reduction in crop yields and perennial drought conditions. A report has been sent to the Centre and the Government will send other information if necessary, he said. Though the farmers have sown crops in June following good rainfall, there were no rains in July and August and this led to reduction in yield, he explained. He also said that they had to press water tankers for providing drinking water to households due to plummeting groundwater table.

The Central team, he said, should recommend to the Centre to provide adequate funds to the state which is ready to provide more information. Uthpal Kumar Singh promised to make suitable recommendations to the Centre after taking stock of the drought situation in the districts. He also suggested to the state officials to send necessary reports to the Centre.

The Central teams will visit drought hit districts on Monday and Tuesday. They are – a team of Uthpal Kumar Sing will visit Mahabubnagar and Ranga Reddy; MaharajKumar team in Medak and Nizamabad and Brajesh Srivatsava team in Nalgonda, Warangal and Karimnagar districts. Rajiv Sharma sought the financial assistance under various heads such as Rs 863 cr for Agriculture, Rs 102 cr for rural water supply, Rs 86 cr for towns water supply, Rs 134 cr for metro water works, Rs 42 cr for animal husbandry, Rs 369 cr for MGNREGS and RS 917 cr for gratuitous help.

The Chief Secretary made a power point presentation to the Central team to assess the drought loss based on factors – recorded rainfall from June to Sept, groundwater table, water levels in reservoirs, loss of crops based on crops sown, shortage in drinking water and fodder, MGNREGS working days and gratuitous help and others.(NSS)