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.
“Demonetisation has created an entire system of digitisation and financial inclusion,” said PK Gupta, managing director (Retail and Digital Banking), State Bank of India, at the launch of the Governance Now India Financial Inclusion Case Book in Mumbai on Friday. He further stated though there
When Bhupen Gurung from the Royal University of Bhutan told the audience at the TERI School of Advanced Studies, New Delhi, about dropping levels of poverty in Bhutan, many public policy academicians were left intrigued. Coming from the ‘Land of Happiness’ (Bhutan ranked 97 among 155 countr
An IPS officer of Tamil Nadu cadre holding the post of assistant superintendent of police was caught cheating, using high-tech gadgets, while appearing in the IAS examination in October, as was widely reported in the media. The case has shaken the conscience of the enlightened citizenry and shows the rot t
Manufacturing will remain the dark horse for the Indian economy, especially as labour-intensive industries shift from China, writes Sukhgeet Kaur, director, project appraisal and management division, Niti Aayog in an official
Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) working president Pravin Togadia is in the news after a long time. This week, Togadia went `missing` for an entire day as the Gujarat and Rajasthan police were on the lookout for him, arrest warrant in hand. Togadia was later brought to a hospital in an unconscious state. At a p
Of late, there have been some anxious moments for broadcasters and no one knows where it’s been coming from, and why it’s happening. For starters, the ministry of information and broadcasting is the licensor for TV channels, in two categories: (i) news and current affairs (&lsquo