The CITU urged the Centre to provide an assistance of Rs.1,000 crore to Tamil Nadu from the national disaster response fund for launching relief measures in the Cauvery delta districts which have been reeling under severe drought.
A resolution to this effect was adopted at the 12th state conference of the CITU now in progress in the city. The samba crop raised in more than 14 lakh acres in Thanjavur, Nagapattinam, Tiruvarur and Pudukottai districts have been totally destroyed. This has badly hit a large number of farmers who had raised the crop by procuring farm loans. In distress, some farmers had taken the extreme step of committing suicide. The Centre miserably failed in rendering justice to the suffering Tamil Nadu farmers by not forcing Karnataka to release water. The state government should take immediate relief measures to prevent the migration of farm labourers and protect their families, the resolution said.
The conference demanded the Government to provide a compensation of Rs.10 lakhs to the families of the farmers who committed suicide unable to bear the crop loss. The government should provide Rs.25,000 per acre as compensation for the fully affected crop, Rs.15,000 per acre for those who have not taken up cultivation, Rs.10,000 each for the family of farm labourers who lost jobs.
The resolution also urged the government to write off the entire quantum of farm loans procured by the farmers.
The conference by another resolution urged the centre to take steps for immediately gazetting the final award of the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal.
At the delegates’ session on the second day, P. Shanmugam, general secretary of the Tamil Nadu Vivasayigal Sangam delivered special address on the various agitations launched by the Sangam to draw the attention of both the Centre and the State government to the plight of the farmers. He urged the Government to provide reasonable price to the farmers for farm produce.