TAMIL NADU

"Take note of our plight in meet on tribunal order"

Staff Reporter

Our requirements not considered: middle delta ryots

KARUR: Farmers in the middle delta region of the Cauvery between Mettur Dam and Grand Anicut have called upon the political leadership in the State to take particular note of their plight while discussing the fallout of the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal verdict at the all-party meet.

Pointing out that over two lakh acres including over 75,000 acres where cash and annual crops such as sugar cane, betel vine, banana, turmeric and reed grass (korai) are raised in the region the farmers here say that the verdict has not taken cognisance of their existence at all and has in fact rendered useless the irrigation rights so far enjoyed by farmers of South Bank Canal in the Kulithalai-Krishnarayapuram belt of Karur district. Those farmers are enjoying 11 months irrigation rights in a year so far.

"We want the leaders of all political parties, without differentiation, to consider our plight in the light of the verdict. Our water requirement has not been taken into consideration at all and the State Government should address the issue when it files a review plea before the appropriate authority," says Kavandampatti R. Subramanian, deputy secretary of the Cauvery Delta Farmers Welfare Association.

At a time when there is still some misgivings among the farming fraternity in the State as to the exact quantum Karnataka has to release as per the verdict, our needs have to be duly conveyed to the leaders, who in turn should take it up with the right legal forum, he adds.

Sharing the same concern, convenor of the Farmers Discussion Group, Kulithalai A.V. Gopaladesikan, observes that farmers in ayacuts such as the South Bank Canal fear that they would have lost the right to irrigate for 11 months in a year to benefit their cash crops.

When the question of a single crop and that too not an annual crop has been listed by the assessors who assisted the tribunal, then where will the farmers in the region go? he asks.

Drinking water needs

The farmers also fear that the drinking water needs of the city populace especially in the summer should not make things go worse for them. We have conveyed our concern and it is up to the political leaders to take note of that, the farmers say.

The tribunal has forgotten us and we don't ant the same to happen with our political leadership, they contend.