Nagaland likely to witness drought-like condition due to rainfall deficiency
Nagaland is likely to face a drought-like situation in the coming weeks due to the delay in the arrival of the monsoon, said state Agriculture Minister G Kaito Aye at a press conference on Wednesday.
According to the Nagaland State Disaster Management Authority (NSDMA) data, the state is facing rainfall deficiency of 20-59 per cent, except for the Mon district where the rainfall is more than 48 per cent.
The minister mentioned that insufficient rain has led to the drying up of commercial plants, including cardamom, while maize cultivation suffered an infestation of fall armyworm.
A meeting of Agriculture and Horticulture departments convened by Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio was held on Tuesday to take stock of the drought-like situation.
Following the meeting, the state department decided to take up this matter with the centre for necessary measures to mitigate the problems faced by the farmers, Aye informed.
Horticulture Advisor Mhathung Yanthan informed that the Agri and Allied Department is planning to distribute seeds of potato, oilseeds and vegetables for the early rabi season to compensate the farmers for the anticipated loss.
Speaking about the adverse effect of rainfall deficiency on Jhum cultivation, agriculture production commissioner Y Kikheto Sema said the area affected by deficient rainfall is 68,662 hectares of jhum fields in 915 villages in almost all the districts, adding that terraced rice cultivation and wet terraced rice cultivation have also been affected.
The rice production of the state, which was 5.51 lakh mt in 2020-21, is now anticipated to reduce to 1.66 lakh mt in the current year, a drop of 70 per cent if the dry spell continues, he said.
This shortage of rainfall has also affected commercial crops such as large cardamom, fruits and vegetables, besides fishery and piggery, he said.
Sema further added that with more than 70 per cent of the state population dependent on agriculture for their livelihoods, the damage will be huge with an anticipated crop loss of up to 70 per cent.
To combat the adverse situation of the agricultural sector, a committee has been formed by the state government to monitor and review the ground situation as per the reports received from the fields.
(Edited by Aparmita Das)
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