Aurangabad, Aug 29 : Continuous dry spell since last 17 days in the Marathwada region is likely to damage standing Kharif crop besides affecting production of cotton, maize, moong, urad and soybeans in the region.
As per India Meteorological Department, the region recorded 317 mm rainfall, against expected 515 mm till August 28.
The region recorded a deficit of 38 percent rainfall. Due to the scanty rainfall, most of the water resources, including major, minor, medium and KT weirs, were not full. Beed, Latur, Osmanabad, Parbhani and Hingoli districts are the most affected districts in the region due to lack of rain. In Aurangabad district, Kultabad and Paithan talukas and four talukas of Jalna were facing similar situations. Drinking water crisis has worsened in 964 villages and 167 hamlets.
At the initial stage, moderate rainfall was recorded in the region and most of the farmers in the region have completed sowing operation in around 46 lakh hectares of land out of 49 lakh hectares, including cotton, soybean moong, urad, groundnut, sunflower, bajra, maize and others. However, due to the continuous dry spell since last 17 days , the standing crops are likely to get damaged.
Due to the scanty rainfall, shortage of fodder and water for cattle also prevailed in the Beed and Osmanabad districts of region where still 63 government Fodder camps for cattle are continuing and around 40,000 animals were taking shelters in these camps.
District wise rainfall recorded from June 1 till August 27 is-- Nanded 492 mm, Hingoli district 389 mm, Aurangabad district 333 mm, Latur district 301 mm, Parbhani 276 mm, Osmanabad 271 mm, Parbhani 288 mm, Jalna district 280 mm, Osmanabad 276 mm and Beed districts 181 mm.
As many as 564 distressed ryots committed suicides in the region since January 1 due to mounting debt, crop failure and land infertility.(UNI)