Staff Correspondent

Many farmers have lost vegetables

to rain

Earlier, elephants had destroyed paddy crop

Madikeri: Farmers in the many remote and backward villages in Madikeri and Somwarpet taluks on Friday urged the political leaders and representatives of the district administration to visit their villages to assess loss to their crops in the recent untimely rain and take steps to distribute adequate compensation immediately.

President of the Elunadu Kodava Sangha Udiyanda Muddaiah, speaking on behalf of the farmers, told presspersons here that most of the farmers living in villages under Makkandur and Madapur areas of Madikeri and Somwarpet taluks had lost vegetables due to excessive and untimely rain, which was still lashing the district. Vegetable farming was the main income generating activity in these villages and farmers were at the receiving end. Vegetables were shifted to shandies for sale by the farmers to places such as Madikeri.

Some of the villages that depended solely on selling vegetables for livelihood were in distress, Mr. Muddaiah said. They included Surlabbi, Garwale, Shirangalli, Kumbaragadige, Mutlu, Hammiyala, Hachinad, Mukkodlu, Kalur, Galibeedu, Hebbettageri, Kikkaralli and Mankya.

Minnanda Nethru, a farmer from Mutlu village, said his village was one of the worst hit by rain. There were no basic facilities such as roads, water supply and transport to his village even to this day.

K.K. Uthappa farmer from Kalur village said the lack of basic facilities had made the village remain backward in many aspects. Elephants had destroyed paddy crops (second crop of the season). It had added to the woes of farmers.

Lalita Kalaiah from Surlabbi village said the second crop (paddy) raised by her had been destroyed. A resident of Bangalore earlier, she had settled down in her village only this year.

Mr. Muddaiah said cardamom, which once had accounted for the prosperity of many of those villages, too had been lost in rain. The district administration should act immediately as the Government is stated to have released Rs. 50 crore to tackle the difficulties of farmers arising out of rain in March. He also urged the district administration to increase the compensation amount being paid to farmers saying what was paid last year was meagre.