Kerala, known as God’s own country, has decided to declare nine cities as drought-hit in the wake of poor monsoon and water shortage.
The states to be declared as drought-hit are Alappuzha, Kannur, Idukki, Kasargod, Kozhikode, Malappuram, Palakkad, Thrissur, and Wayanad.
The nine cities are being declared as drought-hit based on several parameters like lack of monsoon, unavailability of surface water, groundwater, and salt water in the region, and many others. The data released by the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) shows that in 2017, these districts recorded a dip in the North-East monsoon during the months of October-December.
The department had also warned the cities of acute drinking water shortage. Though Idukki does not yet fall into the category of becoming drought-hit, a possibility of water shortage in the city during the peak summer cropped up, thus adding it to the list.
The government of Kerala will be taking immediate steps for the distribution of drinking water in the named drought-hit districts. Money from the state disaster response fund will be utilised for this purpose if funds from the local bodies seem short or unavailable.
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, who is also the chairman of the Disaster Management authority, organised an Authority meeting to discuss the issue. The meeting was attended by Revenue Minister E Chandrasekharan, Agriculture Minister VS Sunil Kumar, Chief Secretary Paul Antony, Revenue Secretary PH Kurian, and Authority Member Secretary Sekhar Kuriakose.