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Radar for cloud seeding set up in Gadag

By Our Special Correspondent

GADAG Sept. 25. A major step in extending the cloud seeding operations under Project Varuna to North Karnataka was taken here today when B.S. Patil, Chief Secretary to the Government, inaugurated a Rs. 2-crore radar station here today.

The establishment of the radar station, the second to be established after Project Varuna got under way last month, and the first in the State outside Bangalore, will help identify conditions suitable for cloud seeing within a range of 250 km.

The location — the office of the Deputy Commissioner — for the radar station was chosen after a careful study of the locations available between Koppal and Hubli. It is a 6-cm. C-band meteorological radar manufactured in the U.S.

In the absence of the radar support, the cloud seeding operations were done on the basis of visual evaluation of conditions, as North Karnataka could not be covered by the radar at Jakkur in Bangalore.

The State Government has requested the Centre to provide night landing facility for the aircraft used for cloud seeding, so that it could operate from Hubli instead of coming from Bangalore. Mr. Patil said that he was optimistic that the facility would be sanctioned early.

According to Mr. Patil, crops in about 40 lakh hectares in the State were withering because of lack of rainfall in July and August, and cloud seeding was expected to help the rabi operations.

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