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24×7 free electricity: A boon or bane?

24×7 free electricity: A boon or bane?
Highlights

The uninterrupted power supply to the farmers in Telangana State has decreased the groundwater levels drastically With the normal rainfall less than actual rainfall from the southwest monsoons in the recent days led to the over usage of groundwater

The uninterrupted power supply to the farmers in Telangana State has decreased the groundwater levels drastically. With the normal rainfall less than actual rainfall from the south-west monsoons in the recent days led to the over usage of groundwater.

If the case of the districts, which were part of the undivided Karimnagar district are to be analysed, Karimnagar has received 7% less rainfall than the actual, Rajanna Sircilla received 12% less, and Jagtial received 11% less. The segment of Karimnagar, which is part of Siddipet, has received at least 40% less rainfall than it should have.

Despite the patterns of deficit rainfall are starkly visible in the undivided Karimnagar, the farmers are gearing up to cultivate 2,25,437 hectares in Rabi season. Out of which, at least 1,60,000 hectares is used for paddy cultivation, which uses up a lion's share of water resources available.

There is a 30% increase in the cultivable land when compared to Rabi seasons of over a decade. This sudden upshot in cultivable land will only increase pressure of the available water resources, which mainly is the groundwater, which can pile up the pressure on drinking water resources as well.

Despite the ban on digging open wells and borewells in the docked areas like Illanatakunta, Bejjanki, Koheda, Husnabad, Chigurumamidi, the farmers are digging wells because they are provided with free electricity. This made the water level to fell to 27-31 metres deep.

Though Peddapalli is in the SRSP irrigated area and has had excess rainfall, the groundwater level has dipped to 15 metres underground, which leads us to the conclusion of dramatic effects of free electricity.

Without power supply earlier, the farmers used to face drought situations in Telangana and tomorrow ironically the same Telangana farmers would face drought-like situations with the dipping underground water levels.

By Bhagyanagar Bhaskar Kumar

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