THANJAVUR: The fear of crop failure is nothing new to paddy growers of Thanjavur district. They sow the seeds of hard work every year unfailingly, but most often reap sorrow. As distress creeps in, they just keep their fingers crossed.
Farmers in Thanjavur district said they have spent all their money on inputs. “As water release was delayed, the farmers in Thennangudi, Sakkarasam and the adjoining areas started transplanting the crop only by December 15,” said Thennangudi Selvam, a farmer who cultivated 10 acres of Samba paddy. His crop is now in the tillering stage and badly in need of water. However, for want of water, the fields have dried up.
“We have spent around `28,000 per acre to cultivate the crops. Now we could be crushed by losses,” he added. He said farmers in Kallaperambur to Budalur stretch are desperate that they have deployed 220 diesel pump sets to pump stagnant water in canals, branch canals. But even the canals drying up. If the situation in Thennangudi, which is in the upper reaches of Grand Anaicut canal, was so bad, none could expect things to be better in Pattukkottai and Peravurani that are tail-end areas.
KA Koothalingam of Pallathur said the crops in hundreds of acres in Maruthangavayal, Kargavayal and Koodalivayal have wilted due to the water scarcity.
The remaining standing crops need at least two wettings in 10 days and for this, 3,000 cusecs of water should be released into Grand Anaicut canal. “To save the crops to the possible extent, the government should provide uniterrupted power supply so that the farmers with borewell facilities could help others by providing the ground water,” he added.
ha harvested till Feb 6, 2018
ha to be harvested