Assess drought-like situation in Odisha, minister urges Centre

Bhubaneswar, Sep 18 (IANS) Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Friday urged the Centre to send a team to assess first-hand the drought-like situation in different parts of Odisha.

In a letter to union Agriculture Minister Radhamohan Singh, Pradhan said the team should also suggest remedial measures and strategies for combating agrarian and rural distress.

He said 22 districts in Odisha received normal rainfall, whereas eight others received deficient rainfall leading to drought-like situation there.

“The districts of Dhenkanal, Khurda, Balangir, Boudh, Bargarh, Subarnapur, Kondhamal and Keonjhar have registered less than normal rainfall. Additionally, agricultural activities in 103 blocks in 23 districts have been adversely affected,” said Pradhan, who hails from Odisha.

He said agricultural activities in Odisha were largely rain-fed and primarily dependent on monsoon for sustenance. Odisha received deficient rainfall on account of weak monsoon, he added.

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