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Rabi harvest under threat for gushing water in canals

Crop cutting process yet to start as Kolab water is flooding farm fields in Koraput

Published: 10th May 2019 11:36 AM  |   Last Updated: 10th May 2019 11:36 AM   |  A+A-

Farmers harvesting rabi paddy at a village in Kalahandi district on Thursday | Express

By Express News Service

JEYPORE: Koraput farmers, dependent on Upper Kolab Project (UKP) for irrigating their fields, may not be able to harvest their paddy in ensuing rabi season on time as the supply of water through the canals is still continuing with full pressure. 

The farmers are facing this problem due to non-coordination between the officials of irrigation and power generation department of UKP. Despite being the peak season for harvesting rabi crops, farm fields are still not dry for starting the crop cutting process.

Sources said Upper Kolab Project authorities had started supplying water through different distributaries and canals in Jeypore, Kotpad, Borrigumma and Kundra areas in the first week of January for rabi crops. More than 25,000 hectares (ha) of land were cultivated by the farmers. While over 70 per cent crops are at harvesting stage, farmers are unable to begin crop cutting activities as water is being flushed to their crop fields through the irrigation system.

As per past records, supply of irrigation water for rabi season starts from first week of January and continues till last week of April every year. But this year, water supply is continuing in May which has delayed the harvesting process.
Farmers said major paddy chunks in ayacut areas don’t need water during harvesting stage. Lack of coordination between Pani Panchayats and officials of Upper Kolab Project has aggravated the situation, they added.

Sources said there was a resolution that water should be supplied by Pani Panchayats and UKP officials from January to April. But non-implementation of the resolution has resulted in possible crop damage. 
On the other hand, rabi paddy harvesting process has already started in Rayagada, Malkangiri and Nabarangpur districts from the last week of April. 

Meanwhile, a group of farmers on Thursday urged the UKP authorities to review the situation in ayacut areas and stop water supply through the canals immediately.
Chief Construction Engineer of Upper Kolab Irrigation project Anand Kumar Sahu said officials are reviewing the situation and steps will be taken after getting field report.

Paddy purchase in Balasore from May 29
Balasore: The district administration has decided to procure rabi paddy from May 29 with a target of 2,20,588 quintals. It was decided at a meeting chaired by Collector Ramesh Chandra Rout here on Thursday. The Collector asked Civil Supply Officer Rabinarayan Prusty and officials of paddy procurement centres to ensure smooth purchase of paddy from the farmers. The district administration has targeted to procure 2,20,588 quintals of paddy during the rabi season. While `1,770 per quintal has been fixed as MSP for Grade-A paddy, `1,750 will be given for other grade paddy.

Harvesting 
begins in Kalahandi
Bhawanipatna: Rabi crop harvesting is going on in full swing in Kalahandi district where paddy was grown on 55,330 ha this year. So far, 26,000 farmers have registered their names online to participate in procurement which will begin from May 15. 



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