Acute water crisis in 550 Osmanabad villages this season

Osmanabad: Around 550 villages out of the over 700 in Osmanabad are facing acute water shortage as the area has received only 15 per cent rainfall this monsoon season, officials said.

There is only 0.74 per cent water stock in 225 reservoirs in the district, located in the parched Marathwada region, and the groundwater level has also dipped, causing concern among farmers and locals, they said.

Nearly 234 water tankers have been pressed into service to cope up with the crisis, as per figures provided by the revenue department. "Of the total 737 villages in Osmanabad, 550 are facing acute water scarcity due to the deficient monsoon this year.

The district has received only 15 per cent rain so far, even as half of the monsoon period is nearly over," an official in the agriculture department said.

The kharif crops are suffering damage for want of rain and some farmers have been forced to sell their cattle as they cannot afford to buy fodder for them, a source said.

This year, the kharif crops have been sown only in 1.43 lakh hectares of the total four 4 lakh hectares available for it, as per official data.

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