Thiruvananthapuram: The Central Government today declared eight States including Kerala as States reeling in drought. The other drought-hit seven States include Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh.
Meanwhile, the Centre has also announced a relief aid of Rs 24,000 core to the affected States in April to cope with the scorch days. Weather forecast agency Skymet had earlier predicted that parts of west and south India, including Kerala, are likely to get a deficient rainfall.
The Centre had earlier sanctioned an additional employment above 100 days per household under the rural job scheme in Kerala.
Kerala Disaster Management Authority had recommended declaration of drought in all districts of Kerala in view of deficit in South West Monsoon.
The State government which declared all 14 districts as drought-affected based on the recommendation had written to the Union Ministry of Rural Development to permit Kerala to provide up to 150 days under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA).
Currently, funds are being provided to the states Under Section 22 of MGNREG Act for meeting the cost of employment upto 100 days per household in a financial year.