Despite Good Rainfall In State, Fears Of Agricultural Drought In North Karnataka

Despite Good Rainfall In State, Fears Of Agricultural Drought In North KarnatakaAn Indian farmer walks on dry land in a drought-hit area. (Sanjay Kanojia/AFP/Getty Images)

Even as it received good rainfall in key catchment areas, 16 out of the 30 districts of Karnataka are facing the threat of agricultural drought, The New Indian Express has reported. The 16 districts have had a dry spell this monsoon, which is expected to continue for one more week.

This has been detrimental to farmers in the North Karnataka as the moisture in soil has plummeted which could adversely affect the kharif harvests. As south-west monsoon has proceeded to the Himalayan region, farmers who earlier expected good rains are now worried.

Agricultural activities in rain-fed areas comprise about 75 per cent of the total area under cultivation in Karnataka.

“There has not been enough rainfall in the eastern part, consisting of districts such as Ballari, Raichur, Yadgir and others. It is likely that these regions will face agricultural drought,” C S Patil, Director in-charge of Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) is quoted to have said.

Added to this, Karnataka Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy’s statement has not gone well with the people in North Karnataka. Kumaraswamy had earlier told the people of North Karnataka to be happy with the loan waiver despite not voting for his party, which has reportedly invited the wrath of Congress legislators from the region.

“There was a strike yesterday in Kopal demanding full farm loan waiver. Today, those who are observing strike demanding complete farm loan waiver, I want to ask them, why didn't you remember Kumaraswamy while voting?” Kumaraswamy is quoted to have said.

Some groups have called for a bandh demanding separate statehood for the North Karnataka region because of the ‘step-motherly’ attitude of the JDS-Congress government.