Drought Prone Area Development Programme – UPSC

In this article, You will read Drought Prone Area Development and Drought Prone Area Development Programme – for UPSC IAS.

Drought Prone Area Development

  • It is the earliest area development program launched by the Central Government in 1973-74 to tackle the special problems faced by those fragile areas, which are constantly affected by severe drought conditions.
  • These areas are characterized by large human and cattle populations which are continuously putting heavy pressure on the already fragile natural resource base for food, fodder, and fuel.
  • The major problem in drought-prone areas are the continuous depletion of vegetation cover, increase in soil erosion, and fall in groundwater levels due to continuous exploitation without any effort to recharge underground aquifers.
Drought Prone Area Development


  • The basic objective of the Drought Prone Area Development program is to minimize the adverse effect of drought on the production of crops and livestock and productivity of land, water, and human resources thereby ultimately leading to the “drought-proofing” of the affected areas.
  • The tools through which the objectives for the development of Drought Prone Areas can be achieved are summarised below:
    • Dryland farming
    • Proper management of water resources through traditional methods
    • Soil conservation through stubble mulching
    • Afforestation by social and agroforestry.
    • Development of livestock, pasture, and fodder.
  • Drought Prone Area Development program covers 972 blocks, in 182 districts, in 16 states.
  • The objectives are being met through development projects undertaken through watershed approach for land development, water resource development, and afforestation/pasture development. These projects constitute the major component of this program.
  • Funding: Until March 1999 the funding contribution of Centre and State was in the ratio of 50:50, but after that funding contribution changed to 75:25 from Centre and State respectively.

Outcomes Of Drought Prone Area Development Program

  • Though the program has a positive impact in terms of creating durable public assets, its overall impact in affectively containing the adverse effects of the drought was found to be not very encouraging.
  • High-level technical committee set up under Prof. Hanumantha Rao in 1993, to review all development programs.
  • Based on the recommendation of this committee, the watershed development approach was adopted which consisted of the participation of local people.

Major Components Of Drought Prone Area Development Program

  • Soil and water conservation along with land development.
  • Water resource development
  • Afforestation and pasture development
  • Further, there has been the addition of the following components in DADP:
    • Technological innovations and technological adaptations such as contour budding furrow budding and mulching etc.
    • Simultaneous cropping of fodder and pasture.
    • Agroforestry and horticulture, dairy farming, sheep husbandry, etc.
  • Some other important elements of DADP are as follows:
    • Restructuring of cropping pattern and changes in agriculture practices.
    • Development of subsidiary occupation.
  • Each state has evolved its own organization setup for DADP, for e.g.
    • Maharashtra is implementing DADP through District Planning Board
    • Karnataka is implementing DADP through an Authority with Divisional Commissioner as Chairman
    • Tamil Nadu implementing DADP through the District Development Corporation for one of the two districts under this program.

Problems Of Drought Prone Area Development Program

  • The implementation of DADP has been sectoral and spatially dispersed.
  • The allocation of funds has been inadequate for DADP, apart from that there has been lopsided implementation and utilization of available funds.
  • The participation of people has been lukewarm, which is the major hurdle in the proper implementation of DADP.
Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Notify of
1 Comment
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Samvid Sharma


Would love your thoughts, please comment.x

Get exclusive UPSC Resources that I only share with Telegram subscribers.

Scroll to Top