Collector seeks assistance from Rastriya Krishi Vikash Yojna

Ganjam, which was badly hit by Phailin cyclone last month, has sought Rs.10.50 crore to take up sugarcane crop, which is cultivated by thousands of farmers in the district.

District collector Krishna Kumar has submitted a project report seeking assistance from the Rastriya Krishi Vikash Yojna to revive the sugarcane crop.

“There has been severe damage to the sugarcane crop under the impact of Phailin and the subsequent heavy precipitation during the month of October 2013 followed by severe flood. The cyclonic storm has caused lodging, breaking, and uprooting of canes and submergence due to heavy rain and floods has resulted in rotting and decaying of leaves as well as plant,” the report says.

After the damage caused by cyclone, the cane available in the field is unsuitable for seed purpose too.

Sugarcane is one of the most important commercial and livelihood crops grown by more than 6,000 farmers in 17 blocks of the district in an area of about 3,500 ha. There is one agro-based cooperative sugar industry located at Aska, which is dependent on the cane produced from the district.

As per records, on an average, 1.5 lakh tonnes of cane is crushed per season.

As per the report, the Aska Cooperative Sugar Industries has entered into an agreement with 6,335 sugarcane growers for cultivation of sugarcane during the planting season 2012-13. Accordingly, they have cultivated sugarcane covering an area of 8,707.10 acres in 17 blocks.

“The farmers are in need of seed cane as well as fertilizer and pesticide to raise the new crop. Unless they get any special package from the government, it is very difficult for them to take up cultivation during 2013-14. This in turn will endanger the livelihood security of the cane growers as well as the survival of the only agro-based cooperative sugar industry in the district,” the Collector observes in the report.