Staff Reporter

Farmers complain of erratic power supply for irrigation pumps

Unannounced power cut affects standing crops

Timing of power cut must be announced in advance

DINDIGUL: Expectations, volley of demands, peculiar appeals, dire threats, emotional arguments and expression of disgust over officials’ inaction marked the first agriculturists’ grievances day presided over by the new Collector R. Kirlosh Kumar here on Friday.

To begin with, a majority of farmers complained about erratic power supply for irrigation pumps. Unannounced power cut affected standing crops in several areas.

Timing of power cut must be announced well in advance. At least, four hours of continuous power supply was needed to protect standing crops.

Reacting to their charges, the Tamil Nadu Electricity Board officials said that slump in wind power generation was the main reason for power cut.

More over, two out of four generation units at Tuticorin power station stopped production. Power generation was expected to normalise this evening or tomorrow.

“Things will be set right within a day or two. But there will be no change in scheduled power shutdown. It will continue as usual,” they clarified.

The Collector told to announce load shedding through newspapers.

Discussing linking of rivers, one section of farmers wanted to link Amaravathi river with Kudaganar river to irrigate barren lands in grey areas. But farmers’ representatives from Thoppampatti union appealed to dig a canal from the Cauvery river at Kodumudi and pass it through Thoppampatti, Oddanchatram and Reddiyarchatram and link it with the Vaigai river as it would really be a viable one.

Reacting to a query on inordinate delay in getting chitta, the Collector advised revenue officials to look into the matter.

A representative from R. Kombai wanted drinking water supply to farmers staying in the field developed under the two acre scheme.

One plus point was that all participants were given a chance not only to introduce themselves but also to air their grievances individually. Not even a single representative was left out.

The Collector responded only to a few queries. ‘I will check it up’ and ‘reply will be given in the next meeting’ were some of the few responses by the Collector to the farmers’ queries.

He silently observed reactions of farmers and allowed agriculture officers to reply.