Agriculture

Poor monsoon to hit food stock hard

Karnataka was the first state to declare drought

 
By Sushmita Sengupta, Jitendra
Last Updated: Thursday 01 October 2015

India reports 14 per cent deficit rainfall

Almost half (17 out of 36) of India’s meteorological sub-divisions have witnessed deficient rainfall this monsoon. But there has also been a paradox this year. The country’s driest division, west Rajasthan, has received excess rainfall.

This year, India received 14 per cent deficient rainfall in June-September season as we officially bid a formal farewell to the rainy season. According to experts, the El-Nino phenomenon, which occurs due to abnormal heating of the western tropical Pacific Ocean, was responsible for rainfall scarcity.


Credit: India map taken from IMD website

Last year, India had witnessed 12 per cent deficient rainfall, thus giving rise to a drought-like situation in the most part of the country.

Too little rainfall

Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Mahrashtra, Karnataka, Punjab, eastern Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Telangana and Konkan region of the country witnessed deficient rainfall ranging from 47 per cent in Uttar Pradesh to 20 per cent in Telangana this year.

Ironically, western Rajasthan received nearly 50 per cent of excess rainfall.

Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Maharashtra and North Karnataka were most affected by deficient rainfall.

In Uttar Pradesh, the eastern part received almost half of normal rainfall. This region witnessed the highest amount of deficit rainfall in the country.

The division-wise details of deficient rainfall are given below:

Divisions

Normal

Actual

Deficit in %

Bihar

1,027.6

742.3

-28

East UP

897.6

472.1

-47

West UP

769.4

439.9

-43

Punjab

491.9

336.3

-32

Haryana

466.3

295.5

-37

Uttarakhand

1,229.1

881.5

-28

East MP

1,051.2

745.1

-29

Gujarat

901

659.4

-27

Marathawada

682.9

412.4

-40

Central

Maharastra

729.3

488.1

-33

North Karanataka

506

357.3

-29

Kerala

2,039.6

1,514.7

-26

Konkana & Goa

2,914.3

2,005

-31

Coastal Karnataka

3,083.8

2,285

-26

Credit: IMD

Food insecurity looms large

Last year’s drought, coupled with vagaries of weather during the Rabi season, has hit hard India’s total foodgrain stock, which has reduced by more than 5 million tonnes.

This year again, the food stock may be affected as those states, which contribute more to grain production, have witnessed deficient rainfall.

Rice West Bengal 14.34
  Punjab 11.24
  Uttar Pradesh 10.81
  All India 89.09
Wheat Uttar Pradesh 27.52
  Punjab 15.17
  Haryana 10.50
  All India 80.80  
Pulses Madhya Pradesh 4.30
  Maharashtra 2.37
  Uttar Pradesh 1.90
  All India 14.66  
Food grains Uttar Pradesh 43.20
  Punjab 26.95
  Madhya Pradesh 16.02
  All India 218.11

Credit: Department of Economics and Statistics, Govt of India

Uttar Pradesh contributes more than 20 per cent to the country’s food grain production. Last year, the state declared 44 districts as drought- prone area whereas this year again more than 54 districts have received scanty rainfall.

Production of pulses will also be affected, as Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh are reeling under rainfall deficit.

More than 50 per cent of wheat-producing areas will be affected by rainfall deficit and this includes Haryana, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh.

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