Farmers in different parts of the district fear that severe power cuts will bring down the yield of many crops, including turmeric and sugarcane, this year.
Most parts of Erode district experience unannounced power cuts for three to five hours a day, apart from the announced load shedding period of three hours.
The Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (TANGEDCO) has assured the supply of three-phase power for six hours during the day and three hours during the night. But the government has failed to adhere to this schedule and started implementing power cuts for a longer duration, farmers allege. The frequent disruptions in power supply had made it difficult for the farmers to irrigate the crops.
“We used to water our crops at least once in two days. Now, the frequency has gone up to four days,” farmers point out. A large number of farmers in the district had made huge investments for the cultivation of sugarcane, turmeric and banana crops, hoping for a better yield.
“As the frequency of watering has come down, we fear that the crop yield will drop this year. This is going to have a negative impact on our earnings this year,” farmers say.
Many farmers blamed TANGEDCO for resorting to unannounced power cuts. “We do not expect the Corporation to provide us uninterrupted power supply round-the-clock. We want the Corporation to put an end to unannounced power cuts,” R. Palanisamy, a farmer in Kodumudi, says.