14 districts in Gujarat declared `scarcity hit`
Ahmedabad: Gujarat government on Tuesday declared 14 districts and 152 talukas of the state as "scarcity hit" due to deficient rains and announced a stimulus package with fodder subsidies and out-of-turn power connections among other measures.
A state-empowered committee to tackle a drought-like situation, which met today under the chairmanship of Finance Minister Vajubhai Vala, announced some of the relief measures to tackle the fallout of deficient monsoon.
Districts which have received less than 155 mm of rainfall till date and talukas with 125 mm have been declared as "scarcity hit" areas, said Water Resource Minister Nitin Patel.
Every taluka in districts of Kutch, Surendranagar, Rajkot, Jamnagar, Junagadh, Amreli, Porbandar, Bhavnagar, Ahmedabad, Gandhinagar, Patan, Banaskantha, Mehsana and Bharuch falls under this category.
Apart from all talukas of these 14 districts, some talukas from other districts, where less than 125 mm rainfall has been recorded, too are declared scarcity-hit, officials said.
The committee also announced immediate measures like linking of pipelines under Narmada canal network for drinking water purposes while new tenders are also being floated to begin construction of canals, particularly in Kutch and Saurashtra areas.
"The state has taken a decision to grant Rs 5000 in subsidy per hectare to farmers who grow fodder for animal on their land. Farmers will also get instant power connection if they assure that they will undertake fodder farming," Patel said, adding the government has planned 15,000 out-of-turn electricity connections just to tackle the situation.
The EGoM on drought, headed by Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, had on their visit to the state capital last week announced Rs 480 crore towards drinking water in badly affected areas in rural Gujarat.
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