Kadapa farmers on edge over dry spell

Kadapa farmers on edge over dry spell
Highlights

The farmers in the district are worried a lot following severe dry spell and uncertainty over supply of irrigation water to the standing crops in the kharif season.

Kadapa: The farmers in the district are worried a lot following severe dry spell and uncertainty over supply of irrigation water to the standing crops in the kharif season.

Highlights:

  • Farmers suffering huge losses due to 75 per cent of cultivation taken up under borewells and pump sets
  • Water levels in Gandikota, Brahamsagar and Chitravathi Balancing Reservoir touches rock bottom following poor rainfall this year

According to meteorological department, there was less than 24 per cent deficit rainfall against 26 per cent in July forcing the farmers to left dry their crops during plantation stage. Due to prevailing severe dry spell, groundwater levels were drastically come down to 22.79 meters in July. Farmers suffering huge losses due to 75 per cent of cultivation taken up under borewells and pump sets.

The water levels in Gandikota, Brahamsagar and Chitravathi Balancing Reservoir went down substantially following poor rainfall this year. The district administration is not able to release water for standing crops.

Farmers have taken up cultivation practices in 1.50 lakh hectares in the current kharif season. Apart from groundnut, cotton, red gram, green gram, black gram, banana, budda sanaga, jower, sunflower are major crops grown in the district.

According to agriculture department, cultivation in ayacut was gradually decreasing year-by-year. Groundnut, which is major crop grown in Kadapa district in around 37,000 hectares during kharif this year, confined to just 13,000 hectares. Sources say situation is worse in Rayachoti, Pulivendula, Kamalapuram and Jammalamadugu segments.

B Venkata Ramana Reddy of Vempalli in Pulivendula constituency told The Hans India, “There is no rain since June. We started sowing groundnut from June 3rd week. The present dry spell conditions indicate there was no rain occurring in coming months due to poor monsoon.

The investments put on borewells for gaining water become totally wasted following groundwater levels drastically come down to hundreds of meters deep. I have invested Rs 9,000 for each acre to cultivate groundnut. But there was no hope of even to get back capital. I have never witnessed such pathetic situation during my 30 years in groundnut cultivation.”

Cotton, the second major crop grown in 10,000 hectares this year against 30,000 hectares in the district. Meanwhile agriculture officials said in view of prevailing serious dry spell conditions, the state government has accepted to proposal of water supply through tankers for agriculture operations. Officials said the government will pay the bills to farmers if they get water through the tankers of their fields.

By M Srinivasa Rao

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