SAMBALPUR: Even as the district received more than normal rainfall in June, the agricultural activities have not been encouraging as the rain was not evenly scattered. Besides, the delay in releasing water through Sason canal system from Hirakud dam due to repair work has added to the woes of the farmers.
The district received average rainfall of 253.49 mm against normal rainfall of 221 mm in June. Out of nine blocks, Rairakhol received maximum rainfall of 427 mm while Rengali registered minimum rainfall of 120 mm in June. Maximum downpour has been reported in the last week of the month.
Similarly, Dhankauda block has received 296 mm rainfall followed by Kuchinda 279.80 mm, Naktideul 275.30 mm, Jujumura 273 mm, Maneswar 235.50 mm, Jamankira 230.10 mm and Bamra 145 mm.
On a single day rainfall record, Maneswar and Rairakhol blocks received 110 mm and 234 mm respectively on June 22 while Kuchinda and Dhankauda recorded 95.4 mm and 85 mm respectively on June 23.
Last year, the district had received 93.64 mm rainfall in June and the threat of drought loomed large over the district. However, the scanty rainfall was made up in the succeeding months and farmers harvested a bumper crop. Compared to the normal rainfall of 429.5 mm in July, the district recorded 491.76 mm rainfall last year, while in August, the district registered 679.12 mm of rainfall against normal rainfall of 442.4 mm.
When contacted, Deputy Director of Agriculture, Sambalpur, Ashok Mohanty said the rainfall in June has been late delaying agricultural activities in the district. Though farmers have completed the initial ploughing of land besides broadcasting of seeds in some areas, the rainfall in July would be crucial for farming activities. Normal rainfall is expected in July, he added.