Locust menace in Haryana, UP: Top developments | India News

NEW DELHI: The skies over many parts of Gurugram turned dark on Saturday as swarms of locusts descended on the town, but the migratory pests are likely to spare the national capital for now, officials said.
The dark cloud of locusts, spread across two kilometres, crossed the suburban city, touched the Delhi-Gurugram border but did not enter Delhi.
In May, India battled a devastating desert locust outbreak in Rajasthan, Punjab, Gujarat, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh.
Here are the top developments:
Rajasthan teams deputed to help in controlling locust swarms: Centre
As crop-threatening locust swarm enters the outskirts of Delhi, the Union agriculture ministry said more teams from Rajasthan have been deputed to help in the control operations being undertaken in Haryana and Uttar Pradesh.
The locusts keep flying during day time and settle down only after dark in the evening. Ground control teams are constantly tracking them and will undertake major control operations once they settle down, it said, adding the control teams in Uttar Pradesh have been alerted in this regard.

Delhi on high alert
With swarms of locusts descending on Gurugram, Delhi environment minister Gopal Rai asked the national capital’s south and west districts’ administrations to remain on high alert, said officials.
According to an official who attended the meeting, the minister was informed that a small swarm of locusts has also reached the Asola Bhatti area in South Delhi.
The agriculture department has issued a detailed advisory to all district magistrates and sub-divisional magistrates to deal with a possible locust attack in Delhi.

The minister also asked forest department to play DJs, beat drums and dhols to repel the swarms of locusts, the official said.
Locust menace in several UP districts
Swarms of locusts have invaded several districts of Uttar Pradesh, including Deoria, in the past 48 hours and attacked trees and crops, officials said Saturday, adding authorities were taking steps to either chase them away or kill them.

The UP Agriculture Department said reports of locust attacks were received from Jhansi, Chitrakoot, Allahabad, Pratapgarh, Bhadohi, Azamgarh and Ambedkar Nagar on Friday. It said authorities of the neighbouring districts – Hamirpur, Banda, Fatehpur, Kaushambi, Mirzapur, Sultanpur, Mau and Ballia – have been asked to remain alert.
Deoria District Magistrate Amit Kishor said a swarm spotted in the district has moved to Kushinagar.
Pilots urged to be cautious during landing, take-off at Delhi airport
Delhi Air Traffic Control (ATC) directed pilots of all airlines to take necessary precautions during landing and take-off of aircraft in view of locust swarms seen near the airport in areas along Gurugram-Dwarka Expressway.
A team has been set up to monitor the situation.
“Pilots of all airlines have been warned about the locust has seen near the airport, we have set up a team to monitor in view of the locust,” a senior ATC official said.
Currently, Delhi airport is operational and all flight movements are as per schedule, an airport official said.
Haryana govt issues high alert
The Haryana government has issued a high alert after a swarm of locusts entered Rewari and Gurugram districts, with officials asserting that all necessary measures have been taken, including deploying tractor-mounted spraying facilities.
Swarms of locusts from Rajasthan after passing through Mahendragarh district of Haryana settled in various villages of Jatusana and Khol blocks in Rewari district on Friday evening.
On Saturday, they went towards Jhajjar and entered Gurgaon district with insects covering the skyline in some parts of the “millennium city”.
Alarmed at the invasion of the locusts, which settled on trees, rooftops and plants, many residents of Gurgaon shared videos from their high-rise perches.
At many places in Gurugram, residents kept their windows closed to prevent the insects from entering homes.

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