Water storage in Mettur depleting; Collector calls for judicious use of water by farmers
THANJAVUR: The widespread rains in the last few days in the Cauvery delta region of Thanjavur and Tiruvarur districts have brought cheer to the farmers and this will enable them to carry out transplantation of samba paddy crop wherever possible in these districts. However, the rains will hamper harvest of the short-term kuruvai paddy crop at many places.
Collector M. S. Shanmugam on Monday, addressing the farmers at the irrigation coordination committee meeting, appealed for judicious use of water for irrigation in view of the depleting storage in the Mettur Reservoir.
He requested the farmers to complete the entire transplantation of the samba paddy crop before October 25 taking advantage of the present widespread rains in the delta that came as a boon to the farmers.
The Collector said that about 12,000 cusecs of water was being discharged from the Mettur reservoir for delta irrigation and pointed out that it was decided to provide 3,500 cusecs of water for Pattukottai, Peravuruni and Madukkur for samba paddy cultivation.
A senior official of the Agriculture department in Thanjavur told The Hindu on Tuesday that transplantation of samba paddy crop was over in about 40,000 hectares out of the normal area of 1.05 lakh hectares in Thanjavur district. Besides, farmers are also raising nurseries for the thaladi crop to cover about 30,000 hectares in the district.
However, farmers in the district are very much worried about the dwindling level in the reservoir that was 68 feet on Tuesday. Farmers at many places who have good groundwater potential in Cauvery command areas of Thiruvaiyaru, Ayyampettai, Kumbakonam and Aduthurai areas are not able to use their agricultural pumpsets to full capacity due to load shedding.
A. Karmugilan, Joint Director of Agriculture, said that farmers had started the transplantation of samba and thaladi crops taking advantage of the rains in the last few days. If the rains continue for a week, there will be no difficulty in cultivating the samba and thaladi paddy crops, he said.
Meanwhile, harvest of kuruvai paddy crop has so far been completed in about 50 per cent of the 43,000 hectares cultivated this year in the district and the entire harvest is expected to be completed only in the first week of next month.
M.Chandrasekaran, Collector, said that harvest of kuruvai paddy crop had so far been completed in about 16,000 hectares out of the 36,041 hectares cultivated this year in the district.
He said that samba paddy crop had so far been cultivated in about 72,600 hectares (53,000 hectares under transplantation method, 7,300 hectares under direct sowing and 12,300 hectares under the system of rice intensification (SRI) method) out of normal area of 1.35 lakh hectares.
Farmers have also started transplanting thaladi paddy crops that would be covered in about 30,000 hectares this year.
Several parts of Thanjavur and Tiruvarur districts including Thiruvaiyaru, Kumbakonam, Ayyampettai, Orathanadu, Pattukottai, Mannargudi, Tiruthuraipoondi, Tiruvarur, Nannilam, Valangaiman, Kodavasal and Needamangalam received good rainfall in the last two days at an average 35 to 40 mm.
S.Ranganathan, Secretary of the Cauvery Delta Farmers’ Welfare Association, said that while the widespread rains in the last were timely and useful for carrying out samba paddy cultivation in the Cauvery delta region, the rains would hamper harvest of kuruvai paddy crop. He said that nearly 50 per cent of the kuruvai crops in the delta districts were yet to be harvested, particularly in the Vennar division areas of Tiruvarur and Nagapattinam districts.
Mr. Ranganathan pointed out that the kuruvai paddy that was being harvested in the rains would have more moisture content and requested the Government to take steps to purchase the kuruvai paddy with moisture content up to 24 per cent at the Direct Purchase Centres of the Tamil Nadu Civil Supplies Corporation.
There was sporadic and scattered rainfall in several parts of the district on Tuesday. Sheets of water swamped low level areas in several parts of the town here after showers while roads remained water logged. Even when there was relief from rain, the sky remained overcast all through the day in several areas.
The district registered a total rainfall of 36.5 mm in the 24 hours ending 8-30 a.m. on Tuesday.
The chief amount of rainfall (in mm) recorded in various places in Karur district during that period are as follows: Palaviduthi 7, Krishnarayapuram 5, Mayanur 4.8, Karur 4.2, Aravakurichi 3.5, Kulithalai 3, K. Paramathi 2.6, Panjapatti 2.4, Kadavaur and Thogamalai 2 each.