Brown planthopper dashes hopes of paddy farmers

Brown planthopper dashes hopes of paddy farmers
Highlights

Brown planthopper that feeds on rice plants has damaged 60 per cent of paddy crops, ready for harvesting, in the erstwhile united Karimnagar district, throwing the paddy farmers into severe financial crisis.

Karimnagar: Brown planthopper that feeds on rice plants has damaged 60 per cent of paddy crops, ready for harvesting, in the erstwhile united Karimnagar district, throwing the paddy farmers into severe financial crisis.

Even those, who opted for crop insurance, are unlikely to benefit much. The farmers told The Hans India that if the government does not come to their rescue, suicide is the only option for them. Linga Reddy of Muttapally village in Jagtial district cultivated paddy crop in his four acres and the pest had damaged the entire crop, that was ready for harvesting within a week. With all his hopes dashed to the ground, he burnt the ruined crop.

In Datnoor village of the district, Rajesham took up paddy cultivation in 1.2 acres, after investing Rs 60,000. He was forced to burn the drop as the disease damaged the grains. Similar situation was prevailing in almost all villages in the combined Karimnagar district, with farmers losing more than 50 per cent of the yield.

The farmers in the district have cultivated paddy in about one lakh acres, thanks to the abundant availability of water and hoped to get a good reap. But they were disheartened due to the crop damage due to the recent unseasonal rain, which lead to the spread of brown planthopper.

However, the officials of agriculture department had attributed other reasons for the crop damage. They told The Hans India that the crop was damaged as the farmers planted seedlings without leaving much gap. They said only 2,000 paddy farmers in the new district had opted for crop insurance.

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