R. Sundaram

ERODE: Paddy has been cultivated on over 48,000 hectares of land this year in Kuruvai and Samba seasons and in the next three months 4,000 hectares will have paddy cultivation, agriculture department officials told this correspondent on Thursday.

The officials said during the Samba season the average yield per hectare was 8.784 tonnes and in Kuruvai 8.738 tonnes. This was higher than last year's yield of 7.2 tonnes per hectare. The officials said this year they had surpassed the target in foodgrain production. The other products such as millets, ragi and cumbu also exceeded the target.

They said proper water supply, availability of good quality seeds and fertilizers contributed to the increased production. Moreover, the paddy was free from pest attack and diseases. The officials said this year cotton cultivation had drastically fallen to 1,000 hectares as against the usual area of 7,000.

They said owing to paucity of agricultural labourers, many farmers were reluctant to raise cotton and usually the crop would be raised over 7,000 and odd hectares of land, but this year it was raised on over 1,000 hectares.

As there was water in Kalingarayan and LBP canals, the nearby wells would get recharged. So there would be no water scarcity in rural areas in summer, the officials said.