Aug 26, Colombo: The dry weather Sri Lanka has been experiencing in most of the country has affected nearly 300,000 people in 19 districts while a vast area of agricultural lands has been destroyed.
According to the Disaster Management Center, as of 26 August, 291,720 people of 84,646 families in 19 districts including Ratnapura, Kegalle, Trincomalee, Batticaloa, Ampara, Kurunegala, Puttalam, Jaffna, Vavuniya, Mannar, Mullaitivu, Badulla, Monaragala, Gampaha, Hambantota, Matale, Kandy, and Polonnaruwa districts have been affected by the prevailing dry weather.
The Northern Province has suffered the greatest damage from the drought. The Disaster Management Center announces that 75,607 people belonging to 23,688 families have been affected by the drought in the Northern Province. In Jaffna district alone, 70,408 people are suffering from this disaster. The highest temperature is also reported from the Northern Province.
Embilipitiya Galbokuoya Reservoir has also dried up due to the drought. As a result, many fields of cinnamon, pepper, vegetables, coconut and banana are being destroyed.
In Kolonna Divisional Secretariat Division, almost all the streams are under the threat of drying out. The Eligal Dola, where the people of Kampane village get water all year round, has completely dried up.
Due to the dry weather prevailing in the water catchment areas of Samanalawewa Reservoir for about six weeks, the water level of the reservoir has further decreased.
Pumpkin cultivation in Anuradhapura Tirappane area is also being destroyed due to drought. About a thousand acres of pumpkin cultivation was destroyed in Puliyankulama, Tirappanaya.
The Mahavari Farmers’ Organization is demanding a compensation of at least 100,000 rupees per acre for the damage caused to paddy farmers in Anuradhapura district.
The Minister of Agriculture Mahinda Amaraweera says that the money available to the Ministry of Agriculture is not enough to pay compensation for crop damage.