Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, July 5:
The spectre of drought looms large over nine Odisha districts which have received scanty rainfall in the early phase of this year’s monsoon.
The weather models indicate there is no possibility of rain in these districts in the next eight days although there is a possibility of a low pressure forming along the Odisha coast around July 12.
In Ganjam, Bolangir, Gajapati, Kalahandi, Malkangiri, Rayagada, Bargarh, Sonepur and Kandhamal districts, there is no agricultural activities.
According to agrometeorologist Dr Surendranath Pasupalak, the average rainfall in 12 districts of the state has been 62-83 percent deficient despite the low pressure triggered rainfall.
Till July 2, Kandhamal has received a mere 17 percent of the average rainfall followed by Boudh ( 21 %), Sonepur (23%), Kalahandi (24%), Bolangir (31%), Dhenkanal, Malkangiri and Ganjam (33% each), Gajapati, Nayagarh and Sambalpur (34% each).
Sources in the state Agriculture department, however, said conditions for paddy cultivation in the coastal and interior districts have improved following the recent low pressure induced rainfall.
However, the condition in the western and southern districts has become a matter of grave concern as a drought-like situation has emerged in these areas.
Dr Pasupalak, however, said there is a possibility of formation of a cyclonic circulation over South Odisha and South Andhra Pradesh by June 8 that might take the shape of a low pressure by June 12 or 13.
“Most parts of South Odisha would receive decent rainfall if the low pressure is formed. However, it cannot be said whether Ganjam and Gajapati districts would receive adequate rainfall”, he pointed out.
The state has received an average rainfall of a meagre 33 mm till June 30. However, four districts—Bargarh, Ganjam, Kandhamal and Sonepur—have failed to get even 2.5 mm rainfall a day during this period.
Prior to the low pressure induced rains in Odisha, condition in nine districts was miserable.
As against the average rainfall of 220 mm in the state in June, Kalahandi recorded 102 mm, followed by Gajapati (100 mm), Bargarh (99 mm), Malkangiri (89 mm), Ganjam (82 mm ), Rayagada (78 mm), Bolangir (70 mm), Sonepur (68 mm) and Kandhamal (67 mm).