Anantapur farmers waiting for micro irrigation equipment subsidy for seven months

 Farmers of drought-prone Anantapur district have been  waiting to get micro irrigation equipment for the past seven months.

Published: 31st October 2020 09:12 AM  |   Last Updated: 31st October 2020 09:12 AM   |  A+A-


(Image used for representational Purpose Only)

Express News Service

ANANTAPUR: Farmers of drought-prone Anantapur district have been waiting to get micro-irrigation equipment for the past seven months. However, 4,250 farmers did not get the equipment as the subsidy was not finalised. As groundnut crops cultivated by them suffered damage due to heavy rains, the farmers are hoping for micro irrigation equipment, so they can shift to other crops.

Since the last few years, more number of farmers are diversifying into horticulture using micro irrigation, and reaping rich rewards. As micro irrigation helps in effective utilisation of groundwater and the state government has been providing more subsidy for the equipment, an increasing number of farmers are getting attracted to it.  In fact, Anantapur district emerged as the top district in utilisation of drip and sprinkler irrigation system in the State.

Farmers feel that October-November is the right time for commencing agriculture and horticulture activities based on groundwater, as more rainwater gets percolated in the monsoon and is available for use. “This year, we have received copious rains and the groundwater table too has recharged significantly. If the plantation of saplings is taken up at this juncture, their survival and growth chances are more.

Subsidy under the Micro Irrigation Project (MIP) has not been sanctioned for the last seven months. Hope the government releases the subsidy now, before it is too late,” said Siva Reddy, AP Horticulture Farmers Association leader. KC Mallikarjuna, a farmer from Peruru village of Ramagiri mandal, said due to heavy rains, they have suffered heavy losses and the damaged crop could not even be used as fodder for livestock. 

“Now, we are dependent on groundwater, but the government is yet to release the subsidy for micro irrigation equipment and the price for the drip and sprinkler has not been fixed. The government should respond immediately and come to our rescue by finalising the subsidy,” he said. As on date, 4,250 farmers owning around 6,350 hectares of land have applied for subsidy and even deposited their share. Officials have prepared documents for 1,348 farmers, but with the government not finalising the subsidy, the entire issue is now pending. Further, it is preventing new applications. 

According to sources, in 2019-20, a drip system was installed for around 29,000 hectares, but the subsidy amount for the same, which is around `140 crore, is still pending to the companies, which supplied the drip irrigation system. As their bills are still pending, most of the companies involved in manufacturing drip irrigation systems have stopped production.APMIP project director Subba Rayudu said that as soon as the subsidy amount is fixed and guidelines are issued, it will be handed over to the farmers. “We verified 1,340 applications. Once the guidelines are issued, will complete the process as per the rules,” he assured.

Govt yet to take a call on subsidy
4,250 farmers owning around 6,350 hectares have applied for subsidy 
1,348farmers’ documents have been prepared by officials 
Govt is yet to finalise subsidy for  micro irrigation equipment 


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