Kharif operations are likely to pick up in the next two weeks

Several parts of Telangana received widespread rains in the last 24 hours giving a fillip to farm operations.

There was light to moderate rains in North Telangana and parts of South Telangana prompting farmers to gear up for farming activity. Parts of Medak, Karimnagar, Warangal, Khammam received rains.

In Khammam, several parts of the district after reeling under an extended dry spell, received light to moderate rains in the last two days.

Barring Nelakondapalli (70.4 mm), Bhadrachalam (36 mm), Yerrupalem (33.6 mm) and a few other mandals, most of the mandals in the district received scanty or deficient rainfall.

Enthused by the short to moderate spells of rain and overcast skies, farmers in several parts of Bhadrachalam, Kothagudem and Khammam divisions embarked on sowing of cotton, chilli, green gram, red gram and other crops in their respective areas.

The targeted area for kharif crops in the district is 4,10,250 hectares, said V.B. Bhaskar Rao, Joint Director, Agriculture Department, Khammam.

The kharif operations, including transplantation of paddy nurseries, are likely to pick up in the next two weeks, he added.

Sudden rains on Tuesday morning on the auspicious occasion of Tholi Ekadasi festival brought respite in Karimnagar district. Though Kharif season set in a month, farmers could not take up farm activities due to the prevailing dry weather conditions.

Today’s showers were enough for the ryots to take up sowing of ID crops. The farmers had intensified the farm activities of tilling, ploughing and plantation of seeds for maize, cotton, green gram, soya bean etc.

Before start of Kharif, the agricultural officials have estimated that there would be cultivation in 6 lakh hectares in Karimnagar district. Due to delayed monsoons, the area of cultivation is likely to come down drastically.

In Warangal, notwithstanding less rainfall, majority of farmers went ahead with farming operations expecting good showers. Of the 12 lakh acres irrigable land, crops have been sown in nearly 10 lakh acres.

Agricultural scientist R. Uma Reddy said cotton was sown in nearly four lakh acres and it was in germination to flowering stage across the district. “The crop will stand but farmers should take care as in dry places pest attack is seen,” he told The Hindu. Despite 50 deficient rainfall, farmers also went ahead sowing paddy in nearly six lakh acres.

In Medak district, Mr. Agamappa has about five acres of land in his village but migrated to Sangareddy in search of alternative revenues and works as an agent for an insurance company and also as registered medical practitioner.

Heavy rain that lashed for about two hours late Monday night at several places suddenly spurred the activity in Medak district. “Till yesterday there were no rains. The situation changed with one heavy rain fall yesterday. But farm labourers are not available. I am trying to sow soya bean and cotton. Some of the labourer promised to attend the work after completing work at their farm,” says Mr. Agamappa, who spent about Rs. 35,000 so far to get the farm ready.

He owns five acres of land in Bodmatpally in Tekmal mandal

Farmers, who are yet to get loans from banks, are dependant on private money lenders to get started. They were approaching private money lenders who were offering money at an interest rate of Rs. 2 per hundred rupees per month if it’s Rs. 1 lakh loan. They have to shell out Rs. 3 per hundred per month if the loan is below that amount,” said a farmer from Ismailkhanpet.

(With inputs from P. Sridhar (Khammam), K.M. Dayashankar (Karimnagar), G. Srinivasa Rao (Warangal) and R. Avadhani (Sangareddy)

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