7th June, 2014, New Delhi
A Brainstorming Session on Preparedness in the wake of possible rainfall deficit during the ensuing SW Monsoon was organized by the National Academy of Agricultural Sciences (NAAS) here today. The session was chaired by Dr. S. Ayyappan, Secretary, DARE and DG, ICAR; and Dr. R. B. Singh, Immediate Past President, NAAS was the guest of honor. At the outset, Dr. Ayyappan, while welcoming experts, elaborated the purpose of the meeting and urged all stakeholders to take prompt and proactive actions for the preparedness for Monsoon 2014.
Dr. A.K. Sikka, DDG (NRM), ICAR informed the house about the possible scenarios that may include delayed onset, prolonged dryspells, early withdrawal, less rainfall and excessive rainfall and other extreme weather events. Fallout of significant negative rainfall departures due to delayed onset of monsoon and/or breaks in its progress may result in the occurrence of droughts and drought-like situations whereas excessive rainfall may create flood-like situations. Dr. Sikka informed that ICAR in collaboration with state agricultural universities through CRIDA, Hyderabad has prepared more than 500 District Level Contingency Plans covering 23 states to tackle aberrant monsoon situations adversely affecting crops, livestock and fisheries. All the 500 district plans are placed in the ‘farmer portal’ of the Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India (http://www.farmer.gov.in) and also in the ICAR/CRIDA website (http://www.crida.in) for operational use. To operationalize these contingent plans, ICAR has already conducted Interface Meetings with state department (Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka) by involving officials from all relevant line departments of agriculture and allied sectors together with officials from DAC. Two more such meetings are going to be held on 11th and 13th June at Ahmedabad and Jaipur respectively. He also informed that comprehensive advisories have been prepared and put on the ICAR website.
Dr. N. Chattopadhyay, DDG (IMD) and Dr. K.K. Singh, Head (Agromet Services) from India Meteorology Department (IMD) mentioned the details of the first stage forecast of south west monsoon rainfall issued by IMD. This Long Range Forecast indicates that there is likely 95% southwest monsoon rainfall of the LPA (long period average) during 2014 with a model error of ± 5%. ESSO-IMD will issue the updated forecast on 9th June 2014 as part of second stage forecast. They also discussed the possible effect of El Nino on the occurrence of drought in different states.
Dr. B. Mohan Kumar, ADG (AAF&CC) gave a presentation on climate variability and coping strategies. Dr. V.U.M. Rao, PC, AICRPAM presented the contingency plans and their effective operationalization for preparedness for Monsoon-2014. Dr. V.K. Sehgal, IARI presented the projections for monsoon 2014 and their implications on Indian agriculture. Dr. Ch Srinivasrao, PC, AICRPDA presented the innovative strategies for monsoon preparedness with a special emphasis on rainfed agriculture. Dr. Ashwani Kumar, Director, DWM, Bhubaneswar presented strategies for monsoon preparedness with a special focus on irrigated agriculture. Dr. Y.G. Prasad, CRIDA presented the NICRA experiences for climate resilient agriculture. Dr. A.K. Srivastava, Director, NDRI, Karnal presented innovative strategies for monsoon preparedness for livestock sector. Dr. W.S. Lakra, Director, CIFE discussed the implications for the fisheries sector.
Topics like availability of early maturing varieties, change of crops, timely availably of various inputs, farm machinery to complete sowing operation in limited sowing window available, fodder systems, livestock, management of fish ponds if monsoon is delayed were also discussed and a road map for contingency plans was developed.
ADG (Seeds), Directors of Central Rice Research Institute, Indian Institute of Pulse research, Directorate on Soybean Research, Directorate of Water Management, Central Arid Zone Research Institute, Central Research Institute for Dryland Agriculture, Zonal Project Directors, officials from IMD, scientists from NRM Division also participated and deliberated in the meeting.
(Source: NRM Division, ICAR)