Owing to scant rain that has led to crop failures in over 70 blocks of the state, the cabinet of Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh has declared a drought-like situation, a government release said.

The decision was taken on Saturday to seek relief funds from Centre, a statement by secretary to the chief minister, N Geoffrey said. “Rain deficit this year has affected crops in over 70 blocks of the state. Villages that have witnessed crop failures ranging between 33 per cent and more than 50 per cent have been categorised as moderately and severely affected,” it said.

Prior to the cabinet meeting, the chief minister chaired a high-level emergency meeting with cabinet ministers, MLAs, top officials, deputy commissioners of 16 districts and representatives of agricultural institutes to discuss the situation, it said.

The state government said that there has been a 50 per cent drop in the rainfall and reservoirs have reached a 60 per cent drop. Last year, Manipur faced severe floods and landslides in the state causing massive damage to property, which left many citizens marooned.