‘Subsidies welcome, but not enough harvester machines available’

According to agriculture engineering department, its fleet has only three wheel models and no track models in Mayiladuthurai district.

Published: 07th February 2023 07:13 AM  |   Last Updated: 07th February 2023 07:13 AM   |  A+A-

Karaikal South MLA AMH Najim and Neravy TR Pattinam MLA M Nagathiyagarajan inspecting the crop damages near Karaikal on Monday | Express

By Express News Service

NAGAPATTINAM: Farmers along the coastal delta districts have called upon the state government to provide adequate harvester machines to avail the subsidized rentals. They also requested the Union Government to contribute towards disaster relief in addition to state government relief. Farmers grieved that the present machines would double the time required to reap lodged paddy crops in damp fields after the rains. On Monday, the government announced that it would provide 50% subsidy for machine rental charges. The farmers responded by highlighting the bigger problem.

According to the agriculture engineering department, its fleet has only three-wheel models and no track models in the Mayiladuthurai district. There are two wheel models and a track model in Nagapattinam. The officials state that many of the machines they had become obsolete.

“We welcome the announcement of the government to subsidize the harvester rentals. However, there are hardly any harvesters to avail them at a subsidized rate. The government must bring in more machines, particularly track models from non-delta districts to meet the shortage in the coastal delta,” said R Rajasekar, a farmer representative from Mayiladuthurai. 

The government announced a relief of Rs 20,000 per hectare for paddy crops in harvest stage damaged above 33%. It also announced a relief of Rs 3,000 per hectare for crops at young stage. The farmers called it a welcome step from the announcements made in previous years. However, they added that relief may still be insufficient for the growing agriculture investment as per inflation. The farmers had demanded as much as Rs 74,130 per hectare (Rs 30,000 per acre) in damages.

“The Union Government must also contribute towards disaster relief for farmers and compensate for the lack of sufficiency in the state government relief,” said ‘Cauvery’ V Dhanabalan, a farmer-representative from Nagapattinam.


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