Special Correspondent

TIRUCHI: Farmers’ representatives of Tiruchi district have appealed to the State Government to bear expenses incurred by the cooperative societies for conducting the recent cooperative elections, which was cancelled owing to allegations of irregularities.

The government should have ensured that polls were held to the cooperative bodies in a fair manner, they demanded in a resolution moved by a group of farmers’ associations during a grievance day meeting here on Friday. The associations also regretted that the government had not compensated the cooperative societies fully in lieu of the crop loan waiver. The entire amount (written off by each society) should be given in full as many societies were unable to refund the matured deposits of farmers. The resolution was moved the by district secretary of the Tamil Nadu Vivasayigal Sangam, C. Masilamani, and supported by several other farmers’ associations.

Mr. Masilamani called upon the district administration to ensure that crop loans were sanctioned to farmers immediately in view of the release of water from the Mettur reservoir. Priority should be given for small and marginal farmers in sanction of crop loans.

The president of District Cauvery Delta Farmers’ Welfare Association, G. Kanagasabai, urged the authorities to ensure adequate supply of fertilizers to farmers. Quality seeds should be made available without any restriction. Besides, farm equipment should be provided on hire in each union in view of the shortage of agricultural labourers. Laskars should be appointed in the Public Works Department to maintain a vigil on rivers. Uninterrupted power supply should also be ensured.

S. Nagarajan of Puliyur appealed to the government to take steps to construct check-dams on the Cauvery and Coleroon rivers, downstream of Mettur, so as to prevent wastage of water.

The State secretary of the Tamizhaga Vivasayigal Sangam, R. Raja Chidambaram, complained that though the government rules permitted farmers to mine and carry tank sediments (‘vandal’) for personal use, farmers in the Thuraiyur region were being booked by district officials.

Collector Ashish Vachhani, in response to queries on issue of pattas under the one-time regularisation of encroachments, stated that the district administration had conducted a survey and readied about 1,200 pattas. The pattas would be issued to the beneficiaries after getting appropriate clearances, he said.