Summer rain, though unseasonable, has helped farmers of Thanjavur district, take up some agriculture activities. Summer ploughing has been taken up by farmers at various places.

“This is a welcome rain. This has helped standing cotton crop and early kuruvai taken up by farmers in pumpset-irrigated areas,” said agriculture department officials.

According to meteorological department, normal rainfall for May is 53 mm. But from May 1 to 9, the district has experienced 98 mm of rainfall. “This has helped in raising the water table. Tamil Nadu Water Supply and Drainage Board officials said there has been an increase of six feet in the water table. Early kuruvai has been raised on 3,750 hectares of land in Thanjavur district. Nursery has been raised on 180 hectares. Summer paddy crop has been raised on 10,000 hectares. Pulses (blackgram) has been raised on 4,000 hectares.

However, farmers in canal-irrigated areas have to wait for an advisory from agriculture department for raising kuruvai. Water level at Mettur dam stood at 32 feet on Wednesday. The storage was 9 tmc.ft, inflow was only 2,000 cusecs. So there was no possibility of opening the Mettur dam on June 12, the traditional date of opening the dam for kuruvai cultivation. S.Ranganathan, Secretary, Cauvery Delta Farmers Welfare Association, said that four parameters have to be taken into consideration for opening Mettur dam for kuruvai cultivation. The water level at Mettur dam should be beyond 90 feet, storage should be nearly 45 tmc, for continuous release of water for one month from the date of opening the dam, and regular power supply.