Unseasonal rains destroy crops, add to farm distress in AP

TIRUPATI: M. Venkata Ramana Reddy, a farmer from Tenkayathopu village close to Naidupeta, has cultivated paddy crops in four acres by investing around Rs 2.3 lakh. He was hoping to make a fortune from the improved paddy market. But unseasonal rains dashed his hopes as they had destroyed his ready-to-harvest paddy fields.

Hundreds of marginal and small-scale farmers in Nellore, Tirupati and Chittoor districts have suffered significant crop damage as a result of the recent unseasonal rain. Tomatoes, bananas, papayas, beans, chilies, mangoes, potatoes, gourds, drumsticks and other horticulture crops and flowers bore the brunt in these districts.

According to sources, Bogole received the highest rain in Nellore district, with 79.8 mm, followed by Rapur – 74 mm, Sangam – 60 mm, Kaligiri – 57.6 mm, Nellore – 50 mm, and Atmakur – 48.4 mm. The unexpected rains hit nearly 129 villages in the district and destroyed crops on about 4,400 hectares in Kandukur, Kavali, Udayagiri, Atmakur, Sarvepalli, Venkatagiri, and Nellore constituencies.

Paddy crops of over 3,597 acres were damaged and standing paddy crop on 1,350 hectares in 41 villages was inundated in Sarvepalli, which has been the worst hit. Bengal gram, which was grown on 600 acres in 27 villages in and around Udayagiri segment, as well as cotton on 250 acres, sesame on 22 acres and groundnut on 20 acres were all damaged.

Apart from this, mango orchards covering thousands of acres in the district were also damaged.

In Chittoor district, tomato crop grown on 234.4 hectares, potato on 57 hectares, flowers on 43.6 hectares, beans on 42.2 hectares, gourds on 20.6 hectares, cluster beans on 20 hectares, chilli on 15.6 hectares, cauliflower on 10 hectares and other crops spread over hundreds of acres were destroyed.

The district administration has put the total crop damage loss at Rs 4.67 crore. Mango crop in around 4,000 hectares was damaged.

Opposition parties urged the state government to come to the rescue of farmers. They wanted the government to purchase the damaged paddy at a support price and adequate compensation to farmers, who suffered severe crop loss. Meanwhile, the district administrations of Nellore, Chittoor and Tirupati started enumeration of crop loss.

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Written by Bilesha News

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