HC seeks Delhi govt stand on farmers' plea for compensation for damage to kharif crop

Issue notice. Let a status report be placed on record as to the status of an application for compensation which have been sought by the petitioners, the court said.

Published: 23rd December 2022 07:39 PM  |   Last Updated: 23rd December 2022 07:39 PM   |  A+A-

Eight notified crops - paddy, groundnut, cotton, turmeric, ginger, red gram, maize and ragi - will be covered under the crop insurance scheme for the kharif season.

Image used for representational purpose only. (File photo | P Ravindra Babu, EPS)


NEW DELHI: The Delhi High Court sought on Friday the stand of the Delhi government on a petition by farmers seeking compensation for the damage to their crop because of unseasonal rain during the kharif season of 2021.

Justice Prathiba M Singh issued notice on the petition by four farmers and an NGO and asked the government to file a status report.

"Issue notice. Let a status report be placed on record as to the status of an application for compensation which have been sought by the petitioners," said the court.

The petitioner farmers said they were joint owners and cultivators of agricultural land situated in a village in South-West district of Delhi, where they cultivated paddy, but due to the incessant unseasonal rainfall during July-August which continued even during September-October, there was massive inundation which destroyed their crop.

The petitioners, represented by lawyer Gaurav Jain, stated the survey of the damaged crops was ordered pursuant to the announcement of compensation by the Delhi Chief Minister but their farmland was excluded from the exercise as by the time the survey began in their village they had sown rabi crop in their fields.

The plea said that in January, an official order was issued approving ex-gratia compensation of Rs.

20,000 per acre to the farmers for crops damaged due to unseasonal rains in Delhi in 2021 but in spite of being eligible, they were unjustly denied the relief.

The petitioners claimed that most of their land faced maximum inundation in the village and they suffered maximum crop damage.

If the survey would have been conducted fairly and properly, it was simply impossible that petitioner-farmers would have been found ineligible for receiving the compensation.

The petitioner-farmers meet the conditions laid down in the Order dated 28.01.2022 and hence are eligible to receive the compensation amount of Rs 20,000.

"To provide compensation to only a few farmers while denying it to petitioner-farmers without giving any reason as to why they have been found ineligible for compensation is per se in violation of Article 14 (equality before law) of the Constitution, and the principles of natural justice," the petition said.

The matter will be heard next on May 16.


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