Under the National Disaster Management Authority Guideline for drought-2010 and Crisis Management Plan Drought (National) May 2016, Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, the state Drought Monitoring Cell were established with adequate staff under the control of State Disaster Management Authority. In pursuance of the guidelines, the State Emergency Operation Centre (SEOC) of APSDMA was declared as the State Drought Monitoring Cell (DMC).
The National Disaster Management Authority Guideline and National Crisis Management Plan specify that “each state will create separate Drought Monitoring Cells (DMCs) with adequate staff under the control of State Disaster Management Authorities. State level monitoring cells have requisite administration, Technical and data maintenance staff”. In pursuance of the guidelines the State Emergency Operation Centre (SEOC) of APSDMA was declared as the State Drought Monitoring Cell (DMC) interdepartmental team from the following departments.
Objectives of Drought Monitoring Cell:
a. To act as the scientific and technical advisor to the Government on all aspects of drought management.
b. To undertake studies and research on various scientific and technical issues related to drought management.
c. To develop a database on various drought related indices and indicators; precipitation, evapotranspiration, groundwater levels, surface water bodies, land use, soils and forest cover.
d. To provide drought early warning information to the Government and other stakeholders.
e. To develop short-term and long-term drought mitigation measures and recommend them to the various institutions and farmers.
f. To develop a network of various resources and user agencies so that the information and database management could be strengthened through collective inputs of these agencies.
g. To initiate, support and coordinate applied research programs in universities and other institutions related to drought monitoring and mitigation.
DMC would conduct a number of core activities in relation to drought management. These core activities are as follows:
(i) Build and Maintain a Database on Drought Indices and Indicators: DMC would regularly collect and analyze data of various indicators of drought such as rainfall, land use patterns, agricultural conditions, groundwater and surface water levels, and socio-economic conditions such as migration, distress sale of assets, etc. Such a database would be maintained on GIS platforms, and be accessible to all the users.
(ii) Preparation and Issuance of Periodical Reports on Drought: DMC would prepare and disseminate reports prepared on daily, weekly, monthly, seasonally, and annual basis on different aspects of drought management. It would include reports on rainfall, various stages of agricultural operations, crop conditions, reservoir levels, fodder, and drinking water situations.
(iii) Inter-disciplinary Studies on Drought Management: DMC would support inter- disciplinary studies on drought management to develop a knowledge-based public policy on drought management. It would combine aspects of climate change, meteorology, agriculture, irrigation, water conservation, and coping strategies adopted by the people. Such studies would provide insights into natural resource management, and suggest feasible mitigation measures.
(iv) Maintenance and Operation of a Weather Stations Network: DMC may consider setting up telemetric rain gauges / weather stations in the state, maintaining the network, and improving the database on climate and rainfall.
(v)DMC's subsidiary activities are described as follows:
(i)Satellite-based drought monitoring in collaboration with National Remote Sensing Centre (NRSC), Hyderabad through obtaining vegetation index
(ii) Crop yield estimation in collaboration with Space Applications Centre (SAC), Ahmedabad and other agriculture-related institutions
(iii) Water balance studies and preparation of Moisture Adequacy Index (MAI) Crop water budgeting studies for the districts and Talukas / Tehsils / blocks, crop- wise
(iv) Impact assessment of watershed development programs
(v)Standardization of average rainfall for all the Talukas / Tehsils / blocks and districts
(vi) Assist the Government in the processes leading to the declaration of drought
(vii) Assist the Government in preparation of loss estimates due to drought and preparation of Memorandum for submission to the Government of India
(viii) Documentation of drought management efforts
(ix) Advise the Government on different aspects of water and soil management