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Survey on to identify drought-hit farmers for compensation

By Our Staff Reporter

TIRUCHI, MAY 28 . A survey to identify the drought-hit farmers for cash relief is currently on in the district, the Collector, K. Manivasan, said here today.

Presiding over an agriculturists' grievance day meeting, Dr. Manivasan appealed to the affected farmers to extend their cooperation for the survey and ensure the inclusion of their names so that they would be eligible for suitable compensation.

The survey would broadly classify the farmers into two categories: those, who had incurred a serious loss in yield and those, who had left their lands fallow, he said and appealed to the eligible farmers to ensure the inclusion of their names and set right the discrepancies, if any, immediately.

Replying to a complaint by V. Govindarajan, president of the Panguni Ayacutdars Association, about the discharge of effluents from a private sugar mills affecting the irrigational and drinking water sources in and around Ramanathapuram near Lalgudi, the Collector directed the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board authorities to conduct an enquiry and submit a report, as the villagers had boycotted the Lok Sabha polls recently.

Farmers, who spoke, stressed the need for convening the Cauvery River Authority for ensuring the riparian rights of the Cauvery delta farmers in Tamil Nadu.

The president of the Tiruchi District Cauvery Delta Farmers' Welfare Association, G. Kanagasabai, expressed his doubts whether water would be released for irrigation from the Mettur dam from June 12. Immediate steps should be taken for implementation of the formula of the distress sharing of water. He also urged the Agriculture department officials to evolve an alternative cropping pattern strategy to guide the farmers.

The deputy secretary of the Tiruchi District Cauvery Delta Farmers' Welfare Association, Kaundanpatti R. Subramaniam, said the Kattalai Bed Regulator in Mayanur in Karur district had got seriously weakened and had become more a source of seepage than storage.

The Executive Engineer, Public Works Department, G. Chennakesavan, replied that the State government had sanctioned Rs.2 crores for strengthening the regulator, which had a command area of about 50,000 acres in Karur, Tiruchi and Thanjavur districts.

The regulator was 885 metres long and the funds would be used for setting up RCC cut-off wall concrete sheet piles to a length of 250 metres. Tenders had been called for and work would be taken up shortly, he added. The PWD had sought Rs.17 crores for strengthening the entire stretch of the Kattalai Bed Regulator, he added.

Earlier, the State Information Co-ordinator of the Bharathiya Kisan Sangam, P. Aiyyakannu, Mr. Kanagasabai and Mr. Subramaniam termed as `welcome measure' the State government's decision on free power supply to agricultural pumpsets. They, however, said the doubling of the tariff under the self-financing scheme from Rs.25,000 to Rs.50,000 for power supply to pump sets would affect the farmers.

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