Farmers seek relief for paddy that dried up for want of water

By Times Of India on 24 Feb 2018 | read
TIRUNELVELI: Farmers of Thiruvengadam taluk have appealed to the district administration to help them get crop insurance and relief for the 700 acres paddy that have dried up and withered due to lack of water for irrigation. They raised this issue during the monthly grievances meet for farmers held at the collectorate here on Friday.
Stating that a major portion of this district was inundated by heavy rain during the northeast monsoon and during Cyclone Ockhi in November and December, farmers of Sankarankovil and Thiruvengadam taluks lamented that their taluks were the only ones that were deprived of rain among the 15 taluks in the district.

They appealed to the collector Sandeep Nanduri to declare the two taluks as drought hit, to which the latter agreed to take it to the notice of the state government.

Meanwhile, a group of farmers led by secretary of Tamil Nadu Vivasayigal Sangam, P Velumayil alleged that the public works department (PWD) officials were wasting water for more than two weeks by releasing more than 1,000 cusecs.

This has been done despite the harvesting of paddy on several thousand acres this pisanam season, while the remaining crops too are ready for harvest and don’t need water.

Denying the allegation, PWD officials said that water is released to ensure that the tail-end areas received it. They claimed that water released from Papanasam and Manimuthar dams have been stopped in Kannadiyan, Nadhiyunni, Kodagan and Tirunelveli channels and is being released only in Palayam channel to ensure supply to cater to the needs of the tail-end areas in Tuticorin district.

Farmers led by P Perumbadaiyar of the CPI, appealed to the collector to conduct surprise visit to the paddy procurement centres and to open additional centres across the district to help struggling farmers to get a fair price for their produce.