Maharashtra state hit by crop loss after unseasonal rain

The Indian Express reports on crop losses suffered by farmers in Maharashtra state after unseasonal rains hit the area earlier this month (March 2015):

Worsening the existing agrarian crisis in Maharashtra, unseasonal rains across the state over the past two days have ravaged more than 50,000 hectares of rabi crop, mangoes and other horticultural produce.

As per initial estimates, the damage is highest in villages in north Maharashtra and parts of Vidarbha. A senior state government functionary said while it was too early to estimate the total extent of the financial losses and crop damage, the untimely rains might have destroyed crops worth about Rs 1,000 crore. The crop damage comes at a time when the state is already grappling with the impact of an unprecedented drought that destroyed kharif crops in nearly 24,000 villages.

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“Prima facie, it is estimated that the Yavatmal district has suffered the highest losses with 17,000 hectares of crops having suffered damage,” the CM said in a statement. Likewise, crops were also wrecked in Nagpur, Bhandara and Gondia districts of Vidarbha, he said. “In some places, crops already harvested and stored on the field have been spoiled. In Sangli, rains have also caused rotting of raisins,” the chief minister said.

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