Telangana

Crops over 25 lakh acres worth ₹ 8,633 crore lost in unseasonal rains: Revanth

A cotton farmer showing his damaged field at Tallampadu in Khammam district.

A cotton farmer showing his damaged field at Tallampadu in Khammam district.

Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) president and Malkajgiri MP, A. Revanth Reddy demanded that the chilli farmers who lost their crops be paid a compensation of ₹50,000 per acre while other farmers should be given a compensation of ₹25,000 per acre.

In an open letter to the Chief Minister, K. Chandrasekhar Rao on Friday, he said crops spread across 25 lakh acres of land worth nearly ₹ 8,633 crore were lost in Telangana due to the recent unseasonal rains and insect attack. Unable to bear the losses several farmers committed suicide, he said and families of such farmers should be paid an ex-gratia of ₹10 lakh each.

Mr. Reddy also criticised the Chief Minister for not visiting the farmers despite officially announcing the same. Instead ministers and officials went to the undivided Warangal district and neither they could assess the losses nor give any concrete assurance to the affected farmers.

He said this year chilli was cultivated on nearly 4 lakh acres spread across Khammam, Mahabubabad, Kottagudem, Warangal Urban, Warangal Rural, Nalgonda and Suryapet districts. The farmers invested about Rs. 1.5 lakh per acre and expected a yield of nearly 25 quintals per acre and an income of ₹3.57 lakh for the entire yield. However, their crops were destroyed by Thrips Parvispinus, an invasive insect from Indonesia which was first seen in 2015. Consequently, the yield was less than three quintals causing huge losses to the farmers, he said.

He said crops spread over 50,000 acres of land were damaged due to unseasonal rains in North Telangana alone pushing the farmers towards suicides. On an average, about 4 to 5 chilli farmers in Nalgonda, Khammam and Warangal are committing suicide every day, he alleged.

Although the farmers are entitled for compensation for the losses to their crops due to natural calamities under the Disaster Management Act, the Central Government always neglected the farmers of Telangana. While ₹1,515 Crore were earmarked under 14th Finance Commission for the period 2015-20, an amount of ₹3,310 crore was allocated for the years 2021-2026. But the State Govt did not utilise those funds appropriately.

While the crop damage was reported in 20 lakh acres in 2020, the authorities have claimed compensation for just 12,32,436 acres due to faulty enumeration of losses. This amount too was not compensated by the Centre.


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Printable version | May 24, 2022 7:52:25 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/telangana/crops-over-25-lakh-acres-worth-8633-crore-lost-in-unseasonal-rains-revanth/article38303794.ece