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You're reading: Drought delivers fresh blow to reeling Indian economy
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Late on Thursday, New Delhi confirmed the first drought in
three years as monsoon rains are likely to be less than 90
percent of the long-term average, dealing a blow to Asia’s
third-largest economy, where more than half the farmland lacks
irrigation.

“We already have a scenario in which growth is going down
and inflation is going up, so it’s going to worsen this
further,” said D.K. Joshi, principal economist at ratings agency
Crisil.

Weak rains in the four-month monsoon that started in June
will drive up food prices and erode spending power in a country
where more than half the population relies on the rural economy,
crimping demand for goods from tractors and motorbikes to soap.

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