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India - Unseasonal rain and hailstorm causes crop loss in western Odisha

Unseasonal rain and hailstorm lashed in different parts of western Odisha on Monday evening bringing the temperature down in the region. The rain has badly damaged harvested paddy crops and onions.

There was a sudden burst of rain in Jharsuguda at 5 in the evening and it continued for three hours, forcing people to desert roads and markets. The rains dampened ongoing Jharsuguda Zilla Mahotsav as water gushed into stalls causing loss in business.

“We had predicted rain in some parts of the state due to a trough formation over the state. Besides, western disturbance and interaction between hot and cold air coming from opposite sides has caused rain and hailstorm in some areas,” said IMD’s Bhubaneswar centre director, Sarat Chandra Sahoo. “The rain and hailstorm will drop the maximum and minimum temperature by a couple of degrees,” Sahu added. Jharsuguda recorded maximum temperature of 26.6 degree celsius and minimum of 13.1 degree celsius on Monday.

The unseasonal rain had caught many unaware in the chilly winter evening. “We were about to go home after my tuition but when we it started raining so we had to stop but we were thrilled to see the hailstorm” said Rachit Agarwal , a student.

Farmers are in fear of harvested paddy and vegetable crop loss due to this unseasonal rain and hailstorm in the district. “We have sowed onion crops but due to this hailstorm I fear that I may incur a huge loss.” said Surendra Kumar Sahoo, a farmer of Hirma Village Jharsuguda.

Similarly another farmer Baikunta Sahoo said, “I have planted mustard crop in my half acre land along with tomato and I am afraid everything will get damaged in the rain.”

Many farmers who kept their harvested paddy in open will incur heavy loss as the crops got wet. “I have kept five hundred bags of paddy in the open, which got damaged,” said Dilip Badhei, general secretary of Paschim Odisha Krushak Sangathan Samavya Samiti (Jharsuguda).
“Agriculture department will do the assessment as per the norms and calculate the crop loss. The farmers will be compensated as per the relief code set by the government, said Jharsuguda sub-collector Ajay Jena.

Rain and hailstorm were witnessed in Sambalpur district also.

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