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Vijayanagara-Ballari hits all-time low rainfall record in 10 years

Every year the Tungabhadra canal is the primary source of water supply for these fields. However, due to the deficient rainfall this year, the authorities have been unable to release water into the canal.

Ballari district registered a 45 percent deficit in rainfall during August, marking the highest such shortfall for the month in the past decade. Consequently, the district now faces conditions resembling a drought, creating significant challenges for local farmers in their efforts to protect their crops.

Paddy cultivation, a major agricultural activity in the region that demands substantial water resources, has forced growers to resort to using tractors to irrigate their fields. The most severely affected areas include Ballari, Siruguppa, Kampli, and Kurugodu.

To put things into perspective, agricultural activities encompass an impressive 1,78,97 hectares of land in the district. However, this year has witnessed only 176 mm of rainfall, a notable deviation from the typical average of 276 mm. In contrast, the previous year saw an abundance of rainfall with 795 mm, exceeding the standard by 30 percent. This year, there are concerns about the district’s ability to even meet its drinking water requirements.

An anonymous agriculture officer remarked, “The situation is dire, and it could prove challenging to address the impending drought-like conditions.” Meanwhile, Shantakumar S, a farmer from Kurugodu, shared the struggles faced by farmers and called upon the government to assess crop damage and promptly announce compensation. Although the district experienced some recent rainfall in the last two days, it remains insufficient to alleviate the looming drought-like crisis, as highlighted by the agriculture officer.

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