Farmers hire generators to irrigate fields

Farmers hire generators to irrigate fields

Input costs shoot up as a result 7-hour power supplyA remains a myth Villagers contemplate giving up farming Viswanath N Kuppam: Despite...

  • Input costs shoot up as a result
  • 7-hour power supplyA remains a myth
  • Villagers contemplate giving up farming
Viswanath N farmersKuppam: Despite the State government's claims that there has been uninterrupted free power supply to meet agricultural needs, the ground reality is different. No village is getting seven hours of uninterrupted power supply for agriculture needs. Hence, the farmers depend only on generators at their own costs. Due to depletion in the groundwater levels in the district, the tanker supply has become a profitable business now-a-days, and now it is the turn of generators. Many fields in Kuppam area are at present dotted with diesel generators and oil pumpsets. In a single village, Bayyanur in Kasedanur panchayat of Kuppam mandal, five farmers are using diesel generators for their cultivation needs and two are using oil pumpsets. For each generator, the farmers are paying Rs 1,300 per day and the expenditure for diesel consumption is an addition. Varadajulu, a farmer of Bayyanur village, is cultivating tomato, chilli and cabbage in three acres, each in an acre. As the cabbage crop needs more water than the other two, he had to procure a generator on rent to supply water. He invested about Rs 70,000 on the cabbage crop. However, he is likely to get a return of only Rs 50,000 provided the yield is as per his expectations. Varadajulu expects a yield of about 10 tonnes of cabbage from an acre, where the market price is Rs 5,000 per ton. "The free power supply is only two hours a day and none can expect the actual timings. We can't rely on this power and we don't want to destroy our crop due to power shortage. I have taken a 10 HP capacity diesel generator from Balavanakotam village on a rental basis at the rate of Rs 1,300 per day. I am using this at least seven hours a day. For every three hours it consumes about three litres fuel. I have one bore well and two agricultural wells and connected this generator to the motor pump set," he said. "This is for the first time in my life I am using it. I don't know any other profession. If the same situation continues next year also, certainly I will take a decision whether to continue cultivation or not," he said.
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