Farmers seek compensation of more than Rs 20,000 per acre as a majority of them could not complete a single harvest successfully this season.

Farmers at the monthly farmers’ grievances redressal meeting wanted Madurai to be declared “drought-hit” and compensation released for the losses suffered due to monsoon failure. They urged the district administration here on Friday to seek adequate relief from the government as they were put to hardship. “Starting on a positive note, we all got into the farming activity three months back, but due to poor rains, today we are forced to remain not only jobless, but have also lost our money in the process…,” they said and pleaded for an early intervention by Collector Anshul Mishra.

The Collector responded that the government had already announced various steps and a team of ministers was evaluating the extent of crop damage in the districts.

The district administration, for its part, has already completed the survey on the extent of loss in the cultivable areas and even those who had not carried out cultivation apprehending monsoon failure had been accounted for in all the 13 blocks, he told.

The farmers also sought compensation of more than Rs 20,000 per acre as a majority of them could not even complete a single harvest successfully this season. The survival of many small and marginal farmers was becoming a big question, they claimed.

Officials suggested that the farmers could explore the possibility of alternative cropping for which sops were offered by the Agriculture and Horticulture departments and the water required was minimal.

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