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Programme to tackle drought

The systematic Government intervention to tackle drought started as early as during the second Five Year Plan (1956-61) when the Dry Farming Projects were initiated. During 1970-71, the Rural Works Programme (RWP) was formulated with the object of creating assets designed to reduce the severity of drought, wherever it occurred and to provide employment in the drought affected areas. Later, the RWP was re-designated as Drought Prone Area Programme (DPAP) in 1973-74 and taken up as a centrally sponsored scheme. The burden of funding was borne both by the Central Government and the State Government on a 50 : 50 sharing basis. The major thrust of the Programme was laid on the activities related to soil conservation and development, afforestation, pasture, fodder and grassland development etc. These activities are harmoniously related to each other and their integrated implementation would have the capability to effectively combat drought.