NEW DELHI: The Centre on Wednesday allayed fears of drought and said though monsoon is weak in certain parts of the country there is no drought-like situation as of now.
The rainfall has been 42 per cent deficient so far but is likely to pick up this month with the monsoon covering almost the entire country.
A day after Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh said there will be drought-like situation in western India, Science and Technology Minister Jitendra Singh clarified that the “panic” in certain quarters over monsoon forecasts were “unwarranted”.
“We had said the monsoon this year will be below normal at 93 per cent of average and we stick to it. We had also said that monsoon will be weaker in northwest India which includes parts of Gujarat and Rajasthan,” Singh said. Over the impact of weak monsoon on agricultural sector, he said the effect of monsoon on crops is multi-factorial determined not only by its quantitative aspect but also by its distribution and several other factors and there is “no rationale in sounding alarmist”.
Secretary Earth Science Shailesh Nayak said the Cabinet Secretary has held meetings with different ministries to tackle any situation arising out of the below normal monsoon.
The Rural Development Ministry has also set up a monitoring facility to keep tab on the preparedness of states for anticipated drought under the ambitious rural job scheme.