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Nine states and seven crops under pressure, says CRISIL's DRIP Index

The deficit is currently the highest in North-East India (-20% of LPA on September 14), followed by South Peninsula (-10%), central India (-8%) and North-West India (-1%)

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BS Reporter

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Rain deficiency in India narrowed only slightly over the past week. All-India cumulative rainfall stood at -10 per cent of long period average (LPA) on September 14, a wee better than -11% of LPA a week ago, but below normal (+/- 4% of LPA). 
 
The deficit is currently the highest in North-East India (-20% of LPA on September 14), followed by South Peninsula (-10%), central India (-8%) and North-West India (-1%). 
 
Among the major kharif-producing states, the deficit is most acute in Jharkhand (-34% of LPA on September 14) and Bihar (-28%). 
 
CRISIL’s Deficient Rainfall Impact Parameter — or DRIP — is able to provide a comprehen-sive picture on water deficiency by mapping rainfall with irrigation cover across states and crops. The higher the CRISIL DRIP score, the more adverse is the impact of deficient rains. 
 
The latest DRIP scores (based on disaggregated data available up to September 6) indicate a grim picture for nine major states (chart 1 below). DRIP scores for these states are worse than their past five-year average. 
 
Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Karnataka are the most vulnerable. While large rain deficiency is behind Jharkhand’s DRIP score, insufficient irrigation cover adversely impacting the latter three states.   
 
DRIP scores are also worse than past five-year average for seven kharif crops namely bajra, soybean, tur, jowar, maize, rice, and cotton. Three of them — jowar, tur and cotton — are the most vulnerable as their sowing is lower on-year by 9.3 per cent, 5.7 per cent and 3.2 per cent respectively (as on September 15). While rice sowing is 2.7 per cent higher on-year, it is partly on account of re-sowing after excess rains seen in the North-West.
 
Kharif crops continue facing risks from a weak monsoon, given only a slight catchup in rains over the past week. 
 
The key hope now, as indicated by the Indian Meteorological Department, is that a catch-up in second half of September will partially offset the impact of scanty rains so far.

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First Published: Sep 19 2023 | 12:06 AM IST

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