Samba paddy acreage in Tiruchy doubles in over a decade, thanks to copious monsoon rains
Several farmers in Manapparai, Vaiyampatti, and Marungapuri, which are considered to be dry areas in the district, have successfully completed Samba paddy cultivation for the first time in 10 years.
TIRUCHY: Several farmers in Manapparai, Vaiyampatti, and Marungapuri, which are considered to be dry areas in the district, have successfully completed Samba paddy cultivation for the first time in over 10 years. Thanks to incessant rains last year.
Known for its scarce availability of water, not many people in the said areas take up paddy cultivation. However, the situation turned for the better during the monsoon. The average rainfall in Manapparai was well above 50mm, according to IMD data. The excess rainfall filled to the brim all the irrigation tanks in the blocks, solving decades-long irrigation woes there. This sowed hope among farmers to take up paddy cultivation with less hesitancy.
Murgesan, Joint Director of Agriculture department told TNIE, "Usually the acreage of paddy cultivation would be around 2,500 hectares (1,000 in Marungapuri, 800 in Manapparai and 700 in Vaiyampatti). However, due to rainfall more than the expected amount, the acreage increased to 4,300 hectares (2,000 in Marungapuri, 1,300 in Manapparai, and 1,000 in Vaiyampatti). With crops reaching maturing stage farmers in the area have started harvesting process."
He noted that about 1,700 hectares that were left barren for more than a decade have been used this paddy cultivation season.
Sekar, a farmer from Vaiyampatti, said, "Our village did not receive enough rainfall since 2005. Farmers here rely on rainfall for recharge of groundwater levels and irrigation tanks. Over the past one and a half decades, many farmers including myself left irrigation works owing to water issues. Now, almost after 16 years, we took up paddy cultivation and are in the harvest stage. All thanks to the monsoon."
Also, considering the copious amount of water in irrigation tanks, farmers have begun preparatory works for navarai cultivation rather than vegetable cultivation.
DPCs open for the first time
Following the beginning of harvest season, the Civil Supplies Department has opened 35 direct purchase centres, including four in Manapparai and two in Marungapuri. Notably, this is the first time DPCs are opened in Manapparai and Marungapuri.
Venkateshan, a farmer from Manapparai who has sown traditional paddy variety said, "Karuppu Kavuni rice is one of the popular traditional varieties sold at a minimum of Rs 2800 per bag in open market here. More farmers have been involved in cultivating this variety this season. However, the price has dropped to Rs 2000 per bag. It will be helpful if farmers get a profitable price for the crop and also a proper platform to sell it."