Lower acreage likely this yasangi season
Medak: Cultivation is likely to be lower this yasangi season due to drought conditions prevailing in Medak district. With shortfall of rains this year, most of the water bodies are dry and the cultivation is likely to be seriously affected, going by the statistics. Of 39,807 hectares in the district, crops were planted in some 6,784 hectares, so far in the season. However by the same time last year, some 27,318 hectors were covered with crops. Because of timely rains last year, farmers did not hesitate to grow crops, and the area of cultivation was significantly better than the area this year. Rice cultivation alone was done in 7,940 hectors last year by October.
The cultivation of other crops, such as wheat, maize, black gram, groundnut and onion, is also low compared to last year. Due to significant decrease in ground water levels, farmers are averse to cultivate this yasangi season. Farmers have expressed concern over the withering of existing crops both due to water scarcity and sun heat. As most farmers did not pay back the crops loans taken for their first crop, they are finding it difficult to get fresh loans this yasangi season. The situation has turned worse, as farmers lost both seasons this year. They received Rs 4,000 per acre as input subsidy in the last season under ‘Rythu Bandhu’ scheme, but the subsidy given for this season has not reached farmers’ accounts yet due to the election code. There are three-lakh farmers in the district, but the account details of only two-lakh farmers were taken by authorities, so far. Only 22,000 farmers received input subsidy.
As most officials at agriculture department are busy with election duties, farmers are getting no help or advice on alternative crops. On the other side, banks are not coming forward to give loans to them. Bank officers themselves have said that not even a single loan has been issued, so far, this yasangi season. Narsimha Rao, Joint Director of Agriculture department, said that measures are being taken to provide necessary help to farmers on alternative crops and bank loans. He said that awareness sessions are being conducted for farmers to advise them to refrain from rice cultivation.