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Making a strong plea for liberal assistance to bail out the State from the drought conditions persisting in 232 revenue mandals, Chief Secretary, Rajiv Sharma has asked for a grant of Rs 2,514 crore from the Centre to reach out to the people with relief in areas affected by the natural calamity.
 The Chief Secretary had an interaction with the team headed by Government of India Joint Secretary to Agriculture, Utpalkumar Singh at a city hotel. A host of officials including Panchayat Raj Special Chief Secretary S P Singh, Revenue Principal Secretary B R Meena, Agriculture Principal Secretary C Partha Sarathi, Metro Water Works MD B Janardhan Reddy took part in the meeting and presented details on the impact of the drought.
The Chief Secretary explained to the Central team that the crop loss was quite heavy. Farmers took up sowing rather extensively following good rainfall in June last and the deficient rains fall in the subsequent months of July and August left the crop withering. The crop yields were badly hit. There was a drastic fall in ground water levels. The Government was forced to quench the thirst of people engaging water tankers, he added.
He said the Government had



identified 232 drought hit mandals to take up relief measures and prepare contingency plans district wise and mandal wise after assessing the ground situation. Officials of the districts concerned would be able to appraise the team members during their field visits of the wretched conditions in the affected areas.
Elaborating on State plea for a drought assistance of Rs 2,514 crores, the Chief Secretary said that Agriculture Department alone would require Rs 863 crores to mitigate the situation. Department wise break up of assistance sought is - Rural Water Supply Rs 102 crores, Urban Water Supply Rs 86 crores, Metro Water Works Rs 134 crores, Animal Husbandry Rs 42 crores, MNREGS Rs 369 crores and gratuitous Rs 917 crores.
Speaking on the occasion Central team leader Utpalkumar Sing said that they would recommend financial assistance as per the norms laid out for the purpose and it was for the officials concerned to submit their reports reflecting real situation. State officials made a power point presentation to the Utpalkumar team detailing on the mandal-wise rainfall from June to September, crop wise losses, drinking water and fodder scarcity, MNREG working days, and gratuitous help.

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