Fears of food inflation and low power output likely from hydro power units
GN Bureau | June 4, 2015
The southwest monsoon, which would be below normal this season, is likely to set over Kerala in the next 24 hours and two crucial ministries have announced plans to face the impending drought.
The forecast of a deficient monsoon has raised fears of inflation rising and the agriculture and power minister have unveiled a roadmap to minimise hardships in the farm and power sectors and keep prices of food items in check.
The farm sector is experiencing a difficult phase and the deficient rainfall is bound to make it worse not just for the farmers but have effects on the manufacturing sector as agricultural sector provides a raw materials.
Total foodgrains production has declined to 251.12 million tonnes in the 2014-15 crop year (July-June) from a record production of 265.04 million tonnes in the previous year.
Agriculture minister Radha Mohan Singh on Wednesday said, "in the agriculture sector, there would obviously be some losses if there are deficient rains. We have confidence and policies in place to ensure there is minimum damage to agriculture sector and the overall economy."
The minister said a new crop insurance policy will be brought in to protect farmers' incomes, while the government will take steps to improve domestic supplies through imports to check the price of pulses, which are already high.
Singh said the government is ready with contingency plans for 580 districts and is in touch with state governments and agriculture research institutions to tackle the situation.
On the other side of the spectrum, Power minister Piyush Goyal said that the contingency plans have been drawn up to meet any eventuality in case the deficient monsoon hits hydro power output.
"It's a matter of concern that the monsoon is expected to be below normal. We are conscious that this will result in a fall in hydropower production and the demand will also increase... The ministry of power and the ministry of coal are seized of the situation," Goyal said.
The minister also said that adequate coal is available at every thermal plant in the country to meet any shortfall in hydro-power output.
The met department has revised its rainfall forecast from 93 per cent to 88 per cent of normal for this year, with the north-west region of the country expected to be hit the most. Last year, the country had received 12 per cent less rains, which hit production of food grains, cotton and oilseeds.
Ministry of railways’ decision of holding the listing of Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) has exposed its seriousness in listing its public enterprises in stock exchanges. Although the decision was taken one year back, the national transporter does not have a com
The tussle between the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and lieutenant governor of Delhi Anil Baijal has entered into its fourth day on Thursday. With no immediate solution to the ongoing ego-tussle, citizens are the mute sufferers. Umesh Sehgal, former chief secretary of Delhi, feels that instead of
As a nervous, young IAS aspirant in 1977, I remember being thrilled to see my name in the newspapers when the list of successful candidates was published. Indeed, I was hoping to be allotted my home state, Kerala, but knew that my rank in the exams did not make that possible. Yet, I cannot deny being a lit
A 16 MW grid-connected solar power plant set up by Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) was unveiled by defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman at Heavy Vehicle Factory (HVF) in Avadi on June 8. BEL is establishing energy security for the ordnance factory estates under the Viabil
Chaudhary Birender Singh says SAIL is at par with any other international steel enterprise Union minister of steel Chaudhary Birender Singh has said that SAIL is a major contributor of the country’s steel production industry and is foremost in terms of production tech
BHEL has bagged two orders, valued at Rs 125 crore, for setting up solar photovoltaic (SPV) power plants in Gujarat. Both the plants will be built at Gujarat Solar Park in Gujarat. The first order for setting up a 20 MW SPV power plant has been placed on BHEL by Gujarat Alkalies and Chemica