Getting habituated to a habit...
There is a competition to live a life that takes you farther from your roots. Our roots are inevitably ecological. Having gained the wonderful experience of knowing ecology from close corners over the last two decades, I behave like an objective chronicler of it. This blog is meant to be a contemporary chronology of ecology, economics and we the being. The blog will have text and visuals. Ranjan Panda
Monday, October 17, 2011
Drought Update II of 2011 from WIO - 18th Oct 2011
Drought Update II fromWater Initiatives Odisha
18th October 2011
On 27th August we sent out the First Drought
Update for 2011 to you.In the meanwhile
we got attacked by one of the most devastating floods of recent decades.Now that we are at the final stage of
preparations for the first of its kind State Level Consultation on Flood
Management scheduled for 23of of this month, we are shocked by more farmer
deaths in the state due to drought conditions.
In fact, this has been the condition of our state and
each year we experience floods and droughts together.While flood keeps us engaged during a
particular period of time drought has been a silent and persistent killer.From this year on, we are trying to intensify
our efforts to see that the debate and action over disasters in the state don’t
die down.We really need a better
strategy to cope with disasters and manage those to reduce the
devastations.About a decade ago, we at WIO
had termed Odisha as “Disasters own Country”. By now disasters have intensified
further and in the coming years, the way we are managing them and the way
climatic conditions are going to change, the situation is going to be worse. It’s
time we join hands and act fast!!This
Update is just another effort towards that.
Just in case you want to know it again, fifteen years
ago, Water Initiatives Odisha(WIO) had started the habit of compiling Drought
and Flood Updates for the state of Odisha and we used to share these among
people, policy makers, media, academicians and other concerned.That time we did it through print papers and
distributed photocopied updates.After
continuing the effort for a few years, we could not keep up with the pace of
the droughts, floods and disasters and stopped the effort a decade back.However, we kept on sending occasional
updates from time to time via the internet and also through our print
publications.Our friends and
well-wishers have been asking us to start it again and we have too realised
that the need for regular updates has become more vital than ever before with
drought and disasters assuming new and gigantic proportions under new
conditions of rapid industrialization and climate change.We are thus resuming the effort.
The format would however be the same: a simple
compilation of news and views on drought and related issues sourced from
newspapers, research reports, field studies and all other sources we can have
access to.We keep it simple also to
reach out to maximum number of people possible.
At the moment, it’s occasional and we may come up with these
updates as and when we can, given our limited manpower and resources.However, with your inputs and support, we are
sure; we shall be able to ensure regular flow of this update.
request you to send in your reports of activities, your views; and any other
interesting and relevant article, books, photographs, and anything that you
feel we should cover in this Update.It’s
YOU who is the most important FUEL of this effort.
Look forward to listen from you and your continued
Thanks and regards,
Convenor, Water Initiatives Odisha
farmer commits suicide!
Lalit Neti, a 35 years old farmer from Bhimjor village of
the Kolabira Block in Jharsuguda district allegedly committeed suicide by
consuming pesticide on Monday, 17th October.It is reported that Lalit, a marginal farmer
who owned two acres of land had availed a loan of 16000 rupees from Samasingh
Co-operative Society for taking up his kharif farming operations.However, crop loss led him to take this
Floods, Dry Spell Worries Farmers
The farmers of southern and coastal districts are at
nature’s mercy again.A prolonged dry
spell after the September 23 floods has left the community worried over the
standing crop prospects.
The heat during the last three weeks is unusually high and
paddy fields have gone dry.
Long duration paddy crops are in the panicle stage and badly
need water for heading and flowering.If
there will be no rain during the next few days, there will be heavy production
loss, said an agriculture expert.
Early and medium varieties of paddy crops are in the dough
stage and ready for harvest.However,
constant water in the paddy field is required for long duration crops from panicle
to dough stage.
There is no problem for paddy crops in areas under assured
irrigation.Reports from the field level
said crop condition is getting worse in the southern district of Ganjam.Farmers of the coastal districts are equally
concerned for their crops.
The system developed in the east central Bay of Bengal had
raised the hope of rain in the coastal belts of the State.As the system has started moving towards
south-west bay, it has dashed the hopes any rain in the State.
Evena s 16 districts were affected by drought and 21
districts were affected by the two spell of floods in September, the
Agriculture Department was confident of a good kharif harvest.The prolonged dry spell had dimmed the hope.
Meanwhile, the Government had asked the Orissa Lift
Irrigation Corporation (OLIC) to operationalize atleast 1000 defunct LI points
The corporation needs to operationalize as many defunct LI
points on war-footing measures to ensure that the standing crops are
saved.Paddy crops on more than 3.5 lakh
hectares were damaged by the recent floods.
Source: Indian Express, 18th
grips farmers in Ganjam
Drought-like situation prevails in the district due to low rainfall
Farmers in Ganjam are facing possible crop loss due to
drought-like situation caused by low and erratic rainfall this year. This is in
sharp contrast to other areas of the State where heavy rainfall has caused
extensive loss due to floods. Most of the canals in the district are unable to
provide sufficient water to farmers for cultivation. In a recent report the officials
of the Agriculture Department have pointed out that all the 22 blocks of this
district are affected by low rainfall.
Non-provision of proper amount of water has started to irk
peasants. In some areas such as Huma and Burupada, farmers have demonstrated at
local offices of the Irrigation Department. Former deputy speaker of State
Assembly Ram Chandra Panda says unless government comes out with some remedial
measures for farmers, it may lead to law and order situation in some areas.
He says it was high time to distribute whatever water is
available through irrigation systems.
Paddy cultivation has been worst affected due to low
rainfall. According to the Agriculture Department data, this year low rainfall
in the beginning of kharif season affected paddy cultivation in four blocks of
the district. But paddy cultivation in other blocks also got affected as proper
rainfall did not occur in subsequent months. It is estimated that no
cultivation could be taken up in around 13,000 hectares of agricultural land in
During his recent visit to the district, State Revenue
Minister Surya Narayan Patra also admitted the agricultural loss due to low
rainfall and drought-like situation in the district. This year, the crop loss
assessment will be made by taking panchyats as units rather than blocks so that
more peasants who are likely to suffer crop loss could be benefited, he says,
adding that efforts are on to save existing paddy crop in Ganjam through lift
irrigation system. Ten thousand lift irrigation points will be repaired and
renovated on a war-footing.
Source: The Hindu, 17th
Withdrawal of Monsoon
The withdrawal started from west Rajasthan on 23rd September with a
delay of more than 3 weeks as the normal date of withdrawal from extreme
western parts of Rajasthan is 1st September. Subsequently, it withdrew from
most parts of northwest India and some parts of west Uttar Pradesh on 26th
September and from most parts of Uttar Pradesh, some parts of Madhya Pradesh and some more parts of Gujarat
state on 28th September. On 30th Sept. it further withdrew from some
more parts of Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh. As on 4th October, The
withdrawal line of monsoon continues to pass through Lat. 27.0°N / Long.
84.0°E, Balia, Umaria, Jabalpur, Indore, Baroda, Veraval, Lat. 21.0°N / Long.
65.0°E and Lat. 21.0°N / Long. 60.0°E.
The cumulative season rainfall from 1st June to 30th September 2011 was
excess in 7 meteorological subdivisions (21% of the total area of the country),
normal in 26 meteorological subdivisions (71% of the total area of the country)
and deficient in 3 meteorological subdivisions (8% the total area of the
country). The sub-divisional cumulative season rainfall distribution is shown
in Fig.4. Three subdivisions (Arunachal Pradesh, Assam & Meghalaya, and
NMMT) from the eastern part of the country recorded deficient rainfall.The monthly rainfall over the country as a
whole during the season is given below:
Water Initiatives Odisha (WIO) is a state level
coalition of civil society organisations, farmers, academia, media and other concerned,
which has been working on water, environment and climate change issues in the
state for more than two decades now.