Crops on 9,666 hectares of land in Shivamogga damaged by drought
Most borewells have dried up leading to scarcity of water for standing crops
Horticulture crops on 9,666 hectares of land, including arecanut on 8,080 hectares and coconut on 1,586 hectares, have been damaged in the district this year owing to drought.
The district is experiencing drought for the second consecutive year. In 2016-17, Shivamogga district received 1,410 mm rainfall against the average 2,230 mm. The district has experienced a dry spell in April and May too.
Borewells form the main source of irrigation in semi-arid regions of Shivamogga, Shikaripur and Sorab taluks. As the monsoon remained sluggish, a major chunk of borewells have dried up in these places resulting in scarcity of water for standing crops.
In a desperate bid to save their crops, farmers in Talagunda, Udugani, Anavatti, and Jade hoblis are bringing water in tankers mounted on trucks and tractors from far away places by spending a huge sum.
- Vishwanath, Deputy Director of Department of Horticulture, told The Hindu that of the 8,080 hectares of arecanut crop damaged by drought, the trees have already withered on 156 hectares and the extent of damage is more than 33% in the remaining 7,924 hectares.
The coconut crop on 56 hectares has withered while the extent of damage is more than 33% in the remaining 1,530 hectares.
The inadequate supply of water from the root system has caused moisture stress resulting in drying up of trees. Owing to moisture stress, the inflorescence part of the flower in the tree is not opening up properly, adversely affecting the pollination process.Moisture stress
Dropping of arecanut flowers and immature nuts have also been reported.
Mr. Vishwanath said that continuation of the prevailing dry spell and delay in the onset of monsoon are likely to aggravate the situation. The yield in the affected plantations is likely to decline by more than 40% in 2017-18, he said.
The Department of Horticulture has invited applications from farmers to compensate for the crop loss. The compensation will be provided as per guidelines issued by the Centre. Farmers will have to provide a copy of records of Records of Rights, Tenancy, Crop and Cultivation (RTC), bank passbook and Aadhaar card along with the filled-in application to claim the compensation.
Source: THE HINDU
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