Weak rains: Haryana seeks special package of Rs 4,829 cr

The Haryana government on Saturday sought a special package of Rs 4,829.25 crore from the Centre to combat the drought like conditions in the state.

Chandigarh: The Haryana government on Saturday sought a special package of Rs 4,829.25 crore from the Centre to combat the drought like conditions in the state.

The Bhupinder Singh Hooda led Haryana government has demanded Rs 4,829.25 crore, including Rs 1,191.79 crore for compensating state power utilities for providing 8-hour power to farm sector for saving e crops and procuring power at very high rates.

The state government sought an assistance of Rs 1,703 crore to compensate for damage to the standing drops, relief for the unsown area, seeds for alternate crops, distribution of gypsum and deepening of tube-wells, etc.

Further, an assistance of Rs 66.81 crore has been sought for taking relief measures qua the damages to the horticulture sector.

"Not only the survival of standing Kharif crops is a challenge, but it (drought like conditions) may have its fall-out on account of low moisture levels for the Rabi crops if the present rainfall trends continue, a Haryana government release said here.

According to the data collected from the India Meteorological Department (IMD) for the period  June 1, to August 26, the state received a rainfall of 124.6 mm as compared to the normal 358.9 mm, which is 65 per cent lesser than the normal rainfall. The departure is more than 50 per cent in 18 out of the 21 districts of the state, it said.

The state government has also pitched a case for an amount of Rs 1,047.71 crore to offset the interest burden on the farmers on account of deferment and conversion of short term crop loans, advanced by the Cooperative Sector banks, to medium term loans in these difficult times.

Similarly, enhanced provision of an amount of Rs 293.30 crore has been sought under MGNREGS and the Integrated Watershed Management Programme (IWMP) to provide for additional wage employment and creation of water harvesting structures in the rural areas of the state.

Other areas of assistance include the irrigation sector, drinking water supply in rural & urban areas, animal husbandry and fisheries.

In a memorandum submitted to Union Agriculture Ministry, the state government said it has been deploying all its resources to combat the difficult situation arising on account of the scanty rainfall and the consequential difficulties being faced by the farmers and other sections of society in the state.

However, the available resources are proving to be inadequate to comprehensively address the situation, for which it expects the Central Government to provide the requisite support by way of a special package of Central Assistance, it said.

Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda has expressed his concern over prevailing drought like situation and earlier this week he reviewed the prevailing situation in a meeting with concerned senior officers and directed them to submit their reports immediately.

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