Special Correspondent

CHENNAI: Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi on Saturday announced 50 per cent subsidy for diesel used by farmers in 18 districts to run pump-sets.

Shortfall in rain

A press release from the State Government said he had allotted Rs.16 crore for providing subsidy for 99,776 pump-sets in Ariyalur, Perambalur, Dindigul, Erode, Kancheepuram, Karur, Nagapattinam, Namakkal, Pudukottai, Ramanathapuram, Sivaganga, Thanjavur, Tiruvarur, Tiruvallur, Tiruvannamalai, Tuticorin, Vellore and Virudhunagar. The shortfall of rain in these districts was more than 50 per cent as on July 15.

The subsidy will be Rs.15 per litre and Rs. 1,000 per hectare.

For two hectares

A farmer can get subsidy for two hectares.

The subsidy will be given till September 30.

Areas under cultivation in kharif

The government explained that the area of cultivation in the kharif season was 7.26 lakh hectares as on August 10 against 19.28 lakh hectares in the previous year due to a sharp drop in the South-West monsoon.