Drinking water, arrangements for fodder to get priority in drought relief works

From Our Special Correspondent

Daijiworld Media Network

Bengaluru, Mar 5: With the summer intensifying leading to scorching sun and worsening of the drought situation in the State, the Congress government held a video conference with all district in-charge ministers, secretaries, deputy commissioners, chief executive officers of zilla panchayats to tackle the drought situation and decided to accord priority for supply of drinking water to the people and even cattle.

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, Deputy Chief Minister D K Shivakumar and other ministers as well as chief secretary Dr Rajneesh Goel and other senior officers, who were part of the video conference held at the chief minister’s official residence Krishna, said the state government is fully geared to handle the worsening situation.

Addressing the media persons after the video conference, Siddaramaiah said all the deputy commissioners already have Rs 854 crore in their PD accounts and the government has released another Rs 210 crore for meeting the drinking water needs for sinking borewells if necessary.

Karnataka is facing one of the worst droughts with as many as 223 taluks facing scarcity conditions, with the situation quite severe in 194 taluks. As of now 412 villages in 98 taluks are facing several drinking water problems and arrangements are being made to supply drinking water in tankers, if necessary from the private borewells.

Apart from the taluks and districts, the government is taking the drinking water problem in urban areas including Bengaluru very seriously and has already drawn up contingency plans, the chief minister said.

Siddaramaiah said the state government has already credited Rs 631 crore to 33.25 lakh farmers' bank accounts and also ensured that crop insurance amount of Rs 600 crore is paid. Another Rs 800 crore is expected to be paid, he said.

The chief minister said about 7,408 villages and 1,115 urban wards were expected to be facing drinking water problems and the government is taking all steps to help the people. The implementation of the guarantee schemes, which ensures that each family is getting Rs 4,000 to Rs 5000 every month covering roughly 1.2 crore families and about 4.50 crore out of the 6 crore population has ensured that the severity of the drought conditions was not felt much, he explained.

CM lambasts BJP, Centre

The chief minister attacked the Narendra Modi regime and also the BJP leaders for their utter disregard to the drought situation in Karnataka.

The state government has submitted a memorandum to the Centre and the Central Study Team has come and visited the State to assess the situation. The government has demanded a drought relief package as per central norms to be released to the tune of Rs 18.172 crore as compensation but the Centre has not bothered.

The Modi regime has not responded to the demand of increasing the number of work days under the Mahatma Gandhi Employment Guarantee scheme from the present 100 days to 150 days, which has also fallen on deaf years, he said.

Siddaramaiah said the state and Central BJP leaders are busy playing politics and ignoring the plight of the people. After all our attempts failed to yield results, we suggested that the delegation from the State under BJP leaders must go to Delhi but BJP leaders have not responded, he said attacking the BJP for playing politics and merely issuing statements.




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Title: Drinking water, arrangements for fodder to get priority in drought relief works

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