Water Crisis brewing in Vidarbha

Nagpur’s oranges and other fruit crops in the Vidarbha region are bearing the brunt of a severe water crisis as borewells in the region have gone dry. The current heat spell, coupled with poor water availability, may drastically affect production of some horticulture crops.

Growers said that later this year, orange production may plunge by 50% to 80%, with other horticulture crops like pomegranate, custard apple and lemons facing a survival risk due to water paucity as well as the heat.

There is an immense water shortage in the agricultural region of Vidarbha with crops facing a bleak future, said growers. Data from the state water resources department showed that the average water stock in the reservoirs in Vidarbha district, Amravati, Akola, Buldhana and Yavatmal has dropped to 15% as against the average of 23% last year on the same day.

Farmers said that borewells have either gone dry or are only providing water for a short time during a 24-hour period.

MAHA Farmers Producer Company Ltd director Amit Naphade confirmed that many horticultural crops in Vidarbha are facing a survival risk.

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