Heavy rain being experienced in the district for the last three days has evoked mixed response from farmers in the delta and the upland regions.
The downpour has brought cheer to the farmers in the tail-end areas of the irrigation systems of the Godavari and the Krishna canals. In a belated move, the farmers are transplanting overgrown paddy saplings in the tail-end areas.
The transplantation process has been stretched till the end of August in these areas for want of water in the canals.
Farmers raised seedbeds in the third and the last weeks of July after a long wait for the canal waters to reach their fields.
Though the canals were reopened for release of water for kharif operations on June 15, the precious liquid failed to trickle to the tail-end parts till July 15 for a variety of reasons, which included the long-drawn modernisation works.
Late transplantation is likely to lead to a delay in harvesting in these areas, resulting in drop in yield, according to M.V. Suryanarayana Raju of the Andhra Pradesh Rytu Karyacharana Samithi.
In some areas, the heavy rain led to floods, thanks to the poor state of the canal and drainage systems.
The drains and the canals, with their course narrowed and discharge capacity coming down drastically due to deposition of silt and high-rise weed, spelt doom for the fields where transplantation took place a month ago. The floods caused deposition of sand in paddy fields in some areas.
The tail-end parts alone were prone to floods in the past. Now, fields in the upper reaches too were not safe as the bad condition of the canals and drains resulted in breaches at vulnerable points, Mr. Suryanarayana Raju said. The farmers would have to undergo this sort of suffering as long as the modernisation project remained incomplete, he added. Breaches the Gunderu drain suffered were causing sleepless nights to the farmers of Sitarampuram in Denduluru mandal.
Though it suffered breaches a couple of days ago, the Irrigation Department officials allegedly failed to plug them. As a result, paddy fields in 200 acres were inundated. The officials asked the farmers to fend for themselves, alleged Parvataneni Ranga Rao, a farmer from Sitarampuram.