Contaminated ground water has been a major health hazard in Chitradurga, Tumkur and Kolar districts and needs to be addressed on a priority basis, said R B Sinha, Joint Secretary, Department of Agriculture.
At a press conference at Hanagal village of Molakalmuru taluk, he said people are facing severe health problems by consuming contaminated water and this will be reported to the government.
Criticising the failure of the Zilla Panchayat to implement water protection measures in Molakalmuru taluk, he said the rain water could have been harvested if proper check dams were built. Leader of the inter-ministerial Central team constituted by the Ministry of Agriculture, admitted that crop loss was severe in major parts of the taluks he visited.
The team visited Nelagethanahatti, Nayakanahatti, Rayapura, Hirehalli, Rangayyanaha Durga dam, Hanagal, BG Kere, Dodda Ullarthy, Jajur and other villages where they found barren lands. At Rayapura, the team inspected a dried guava plantation and coconut farm which shocked them. People complained about the shortage of fodder, crop loss, bone deformities and other problems.
At Rangayyana Durga, advocate Ashok apprised the team about the drinking water problem and requested them to urge the Centre to supply surface drinking water from the backwaters of Tungabhadra Dam and Upper Bhadra project.
Villagers at Dodda Ullarthy demanded a goshala as the fodder problem was acute. Deputy Commissioner V P Ikkeri who accompanied the team, said the district administration was equipped to face the drought situation and fodder banks will be opened on recommendation of the Veterinary and Animal Husbandry Department. The team will hold a meeting at Bangalore on Thursday before departing to New Delhi.