Officials visited the fields after the harvest, says farmers’ association
Alleging that there has been a large-scale act of omission and commission in assessing crop damage in the Cauvery delta region of Kulithalai and Krishnaryapuram in Karur district, farmers and political parties have raised a demand to re-evaluate the crop damage assessed. The issue assumes importance since the State government has sanctioned a hefty compensation for the losses suffered by farmers.
“The officials have undertaken the job of assessing paddy crop damage in Krishnarayapuram areas haphazardly to say the least. There have been blatant acts of omission and commission on the part of the Revenue and the Agriculture Department officials. Real sufferers have been left in the lurch and those whose crops have not even been marginally affected queued up to receive the compensation. When the Chief Minister Jayalalithaa wanted to give relief to the genuinely affected farmers, some officials are trying to deny us that benefit and we are sad and cannot do anything more,” says S. Chenniappan of Sithalavai.
“Paddy fields on hundreds of acres of land across Neithalaur, Mudalaipatti, Nangavaram, Lalapet, Mahadanapuram, Marudur, Kumaramangalam, Inngur, Poyyamani, and Suriyanur areas suffered more than 65 per cent damage because of continuing drought. There was no regular supply of water in the ayacuts that enjoyed exclusive irrigation rights. Even in the fields harvested farmers have reported a heavy loss of productivity. But the officials have glossed over many facts and have prepared a hasty report just to satisfy some higher ups. What we need is a just, speedy, and proper compensation for the real damages we farmers have suffered,” points out deputy secretary of the Cauvery Delta Farmers Welfare Association Kavandampatti R. Subramanian.
One major flaw was that the assessment was carried out in Karur district only after the harvest was over whereas in the neighbouring Tiruchi district, the officials surveyed the loss well before the harvest and were able to get the correct picture, Mr. Subramani said.
“What we need is that the officials must assess the damage properly by conducting a village level screening through proper verbal testimony corroborated by field data and survey by the Revenue and Agriculture Department officials in the presence of farmers to rectify the mistakes already committed,” the association said.
There was a political and communal angle to the dispensation of compensation to the affected farmers in Karur district. The Viduthalai Chiruthagal Katchi and some dalit organisations have staged protests alleging that small and marginal farmers had been denied their due compensation. They along with other oppressed sections had been neglected in the assessment done by the officials.
‘Chief Minister wants to help us but officials are denying us justice’ Farmers demand village-level screening through verbal testimony
‘Chief Minister wants to help us but officials are denying us justice’
Farmers demand village-level screening through verbal testimony