Sri Lanka is currently facing a drought situation, leaving around 70,000 people in distress as water scarcity becomes a pressing issue in several provinces. The dry weather conditions have particularly impacted the Northern, North Western, Eastern, and Sabaragamuwa provinces, where approximately 69,000 individuals are grappling with drinking water shortages. In response to the crisis, the government has taken measures to provide drinking water to the affected communities. Severe drought situation reports in Jaffna, Trincomalee, Rathnapura, Kurunegala, and Puttalam Districts.
The scarcity of water has not only affected human populations but also wildlife at national parks. The Wildlife Conservation Department has acknowledged the severity of the situation and has decided to step in to provide water for the animals.
As the drought persists, the agricultural sector is also facing significant challenges, with a considerable number of paddy fields and other crops being severely impacted. Agriculture Minister Mahinda Amaraweera expressed concern over the situation and criticized relevant state institutions for failing to forewarn farmers about the possibility of drought conditions and water shortages.
He called upon the Department of Agriculture, the Irrigation Department, the Mahaweli Authority, and the Meteorology Department to take responsibility for their role in not providing adequate warnings and information to farmers, which could have helped them prepare and mitigate the impact of the drought on their crops.