NAGERCOIL: At a time when the State is plagued by acute water crisis, the farmers in Kanniyakumari district who had sowed for kharif season are now keeping their fingers crossed as water from Pechiparai and Perunchani dams have not yet been released.
Though the officials have sent proposals to release water from the dams, the farmers fear that the authorities won’t be able to open the shutters of the dams as the water level in the dam is very low. After the rains flooded the district in August last, the district has received no rain.
Sources said paddy crops were usually sown in nearly 6,000 hectres during the kharif season in the district. Every year, the authorities open the shutters of the dams between June 1-5 to enable the farmers carry out irrigation. “In previous years, 2,400 cusec of water used to be released. However, there is only 1,400 cusec of water in the dams as of now and even if it is released, it won’t be of much help to the farmers. Now, the farmers have sown paddy crops only in 500 acres as they are in a dilemma,” they said.
Speaking to Express, Yovan, an 80 year-old farmer who owns 6 acres in Nallur said that he depended water from dam and that in Kalpatti pond that gets filled during monsoon for cultivation. “I have sown seeds and the crop has grown a feet now, but their is no water,” he said.
Farmers from Nallur, Thalakudi, Vellamadam and Nakalmadam have started sowing seeds and those from Villukuri, Paraseri, Sungankadai haven’t begun irrigation yet. All Indian Kishan Sabha district committee member S Viji said major cultivation was being carried out in Thovalai, Agastheeswaram, Kuruthancode and Rajakkamangalam blocks.