The widespread rainfall in the district over the past week has come as a big relief for farmers in Tiruchi district. Though the district was yet to get its normal rainfall during the North East monsoon season, the rain has been scattered so far helping standing crops in rain fed areas also.

According to the statistics provided by the Regional Meteorological Centre, Chennai, the district had received 55.5 mm of rainfall under the NE monsoon season, between October 1 and November 4. With a deviation of -72 per cent against the normal rainfall of 196.7 mm for the period, the rainfall in the district was still “scanty.” However, during the week ending on November 4, the district had received 41.3 mm of rainfall against the normal rainfall of 35.7 mm for the period.

Agriculture Department officials observe that the rainfall in the district has been widespread and scattered. Samba paddy crop in about 48,000 hectares, including 4,000 hectares of carry-over area from the kuruvai season, was in good condition, N.Ponnusamy, Joint Director of Agriculture, told The Hindu here on Sunday. Mr.Ponnusamy was confident that the samba paddy coverage would touch 60,000 hectares in the district within the next few days as planned earlier.

The rain in the rainfed areas of the district would help millets in about 21,000 hectares, he added. As for paddy, Mr.Ponnusamy said farmers need not go in for application of any pesticide at this stage. The Agriculture Department was already distributing leaf colour charts to the farmers to identify nitrogen deficiency. Only in fields where the crop show deficiency (as indicated by the colour of leaf given in the charts), farmers need to apply urea, he said. Mr.Ponnusamy also disclosed that a control room has been set by the department and farmers could call 2420554 for any assistance.

Collector Soundiah has declared a holiday for schools and colleges in the district on Monday. The chief amount of rainfall recorded in the district over the 24-hour period ending at 8.30 a.m.on Sunday were as follows (in mm): Ponnaiyar Dam 68.80; Manapparai 50.40; Kallakudi 41.10; Marungapuri 40.20; Kovilpatti 35.20; Nandiyar Head 32; Devimangalam 28.60; Sirukudi 25; Tiruchi Junction 25; Pullampadi 23.80; Samayapuram 23.50; Lalgudi 23.40; Koppampatti 23; Tiruchi Town 22; Tiruchi Airport 21.60, Pulivalam 20; Golden Rock 19.60; Vathalai 17, Navalurkottapattu 14, Musiri and Thuraiyur 11 each.

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