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A time for desperate measures

T.V. Sivanandan
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In distress: Nandavva, a farmer, removing the green gram crop from her field in Bandolli village of Yadgir district.
In distress: Nandavva, a farmer, removing the green gram crop from her field in Bandolli village of Yadgir district.

It is an unusual sight to see a farmer removing the green gram crop from her field.

“What else can we do… the floodwaters from the Krishna will enter the fields and damage the crop; if we remove the crop now, at least it can be fed to our cattle,” said Nandavva, a farmer.

Worried

“We have taken loans from moneylenders to purchase seeds and fertilizer to grow red gram, sesamum and green gram on the banks of the Krishna. Flowering of the sesamum crop has begun, pod formation of the green gram after flowering has begun and the red gram crop has started branching out. All this will be lost now owing to the floods,” said Basamma and her husband Hanumanthappa.

“The floodwaters have entered our fields, and some of the standing crops are submerged. We have no hope of redeeming the crop this year also,” said Ms. Basamma, with tears in her eyes.

Owing to the floods last year, the farmers in the village suffered heavy loss, and they got only Rs. 800 an acre as compensation.

The farmers said in the event of floodwaters entering their houses, they could shift to a safe place and come back after the water receded, but “we cannot retrieve even a single grain from our fields.”

Houses not built

Most of the residents in villages of Surpur taluk, who were marooned during the floods last year, still live in their leaking houses despite fears that they could collapse. So far, the authorities have not constructed even one house at the relocation centres.

“We did not sleep at all on Thursday and Friday because of the rising water-level in the Krishna ,” said Ms. Nandavva and her husband Sharanagowda.

“Our house will be the first to get submerged in the event of floods,” said Mr. Sharanagowda.

Farmers forced to remove their crops as floodwaters enter some fields in Bandolli

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