Farmers say Nochipalayam, Karaipudur and Iduvampalayam have been hit

Farmers are getting more and more irked as illegal tapping of groundwater from Tirupur city and its immediate suburbs for commercial usage has once again allegedly become rampant in the region.

“Already, we have been struggling to irrigate the crops due to failing monsoon and with the exploitation of groundwater from predominant agrarian belts for other purposes, water scarcity is becoming acute, threatening the very existence of farming profession itself,” K. C.M. Balasubramaniam, one of the progressive farmers who had sought the intervention of district administration to stop the exploitation of groundwater, told The Hindu.

According to farmers, over exploitation of groundwater resources is taking place at Nochipalayam, Karaipudur, Iduvampalayam, Chinnakalipalayam, Vachipalayam and Iduvai areas.

K. Vanchipalayam Durai, a farmer-cum-activist, pointed out that illegally-drawn water from open wells, through borewells and even by collecting water from PAP canal in the pretext of conserving for irrigation was diverted for use in wet processing units in textile industry, marriage halls and construction sites.

“The water tanker operators mostly pay a pittance of Rs. 100 for every load of 12,000 litres to the owner of the land from where the water is sucked out and then sell the same quantity to the end-user at Rs. 800 to Rs 1,000,” he pointed out.

But many of the farmers who are now seeking relief against the exploitation of groundwater admit that some of the members from agrarian community too need to be blamed for lending a helping hand to water tanker operators.

“A section of farmers are allowing usage of the free electricity supplied to them exclusively for agricultural purposes, to draw water from wells and underground resources for commercial sales,” Mr. Durai pointed out.

Disconnecting service connections

As a solution, the farmers, who are starving for water, have come up with an appeal to the revenue administration and Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation to initiate steps to permanently disconnect the service connections utilized for drawing underground water on a commercial basis.