ROURKELA: Sundargarh administration has started work on extending relief to drought-hit farmers in the district. As per Government reports, 67,540 hectares (ha) of agricultural land have been affected by drought.
Sundargarh Deputy Director of Agriculture, RN Satpathy informed that as per Government announcement, farmers suffering above 33 per cent (pc) crop loss would get financial assistance of `13,500 per ha, while it would be `6,800 per ha for non-irrigated land.
For the upcoming rabi season, farmers of assured irrigated areas would also be provided free mini-kits for cultivation of mustard, peanut, Rasi, sunflower, Moong and Biri. Similarly, farmers would be provided 50 pc subsidy for procurement of pump sets, pipes and pesticides, Satpathy added. Cultivation programme for rabi crop would be worked on from November 14 to 16. However, this time irrigation potential would drastically come down as there is no water in minor irrigation and lift irrigation points due to erratic monsoon. Water storage level of the four medium irrigation reservoirs have also come down.
In the kharif season 2018-19, various irrigation authorities had planned to irrigate 51,383 ha but for rabi season, irrigation potential may come down by 16 to 17 pc.
Earlier, Special Relief Commissioner (SRC) to Revenue and Disaster Management Department conducted an eye estimation report of the crop loss and notified that 67,540 ha of land in the district is drought-hit which will lead to moderate to severe paddy crop losses.
The SRC had accepted a report by Sundargarh administration stating that 35,986 ha suffered above 50 pc crop damage, while 31,554 ha suffered 33 to 50 pc crop loss. The SRC has authorised Sundargarh Collector to undertake necessary relief measures in affected areas. As per the SRC notification, Hemgir, Lefripara, Tangarpali, Sundargarh, Subdega, Balishankara, Bargaon and Kutra blocks faced severe drought with above 50 pc crop loss over 3,918 ha, 3,658 ha, 6,540 ha, 8,790 ha, 4,166 ha, 1,341 ha, 211 ha and 7,364 ha respectively - a total of 35,985 ha.