Water shortage has brought about crop damages to the tune of Rs 724.5 crore this summer, agriculture minister V S Sunil Kumar said in the assembly on Tuesday. The estimates were based on preliminary findings and the damage figure could go up once final tabulation is done, the minister said. Water scarcity has damaged crops in about 41,592.3 hectares across the state.
Insurers who thought they could make farm insurance a lucrative business were in for a disappointment. In the latest development, the Karnataka government scrapped a tender as the offers were for higher premium, and has called for fresh bids. Crop insurance, which is fast moving towards becoming a third of the Rs 1.25 lakh crore general insurance industry, is facing issues such as high claims, inadequate premium and lower interest in buying cover when the monsoon is good.
Cultivation in 1.54 lakh hectare land in six districts was affected due to thunderstorms in the past few weeks. Sources said that the state Agriculture department has carried out a study to assess the loss and the preliminary report in this connection was submitted to the department. The final report in this connection will be submitted within a week in which details of the monetary loss due to the natural calamity in agriculture will be mentioned.
A strong gale and sharp showers have uprooted acres of banana crops that were ready for harvest at Parpanampatti village in Agaram panchayat in the district. Despite repeated appeals by the distressed farmers, officials have not turned up to assess the crop damage. Banana trees cultivated on around five acres have been destroyed in the village. Many farmers had raised hybrid country, robusta and tissue-cultured G-9 varieties, and several trees had started producing fruits.
The government is aiming to bring 40 per cent of gross sown area of 194.4 million hectare under crop insurance schemes in 2017-18 season beginning July. In 2016-17 crop year, about 26.28 per cent or 51.1 million hectare of gross area under crops was insured. At present, crops are being insured under two schemes: Restructured Weather Based Crop Insurance Scheme (RWBCIS) and Pradhan Manthri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY). The PMFBY was launched last year.
Commissioner of Fisheries C Suvarna suggested on Thursday some preventive and control measures to be taken by the fishermen during the summer season to avoid economic losses, due to prevailing high temperature, high density of fish in tanks, gradual reduction of water levels, deficiency of dissolved oxygen and deterioration in the quality of water, etc. When the problem is severe, there are possibilities of mass mortality of fish in tanks.
A gale destroyed banana crop on a vast stretch of land covering several villages between Chinnamanur and Cumbum valley on Wednesday. Thousands of trees in many farms at Vellaiammalpuram, Erasakkanaickanur, Kanniservaipatti, Kanniyampatti, Chinnaovalapuram and Cumbum were completely destroyed. More than 85% of the trees in each field were uprooted in several villages.
The BJP government on Tuesday decided to implement the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana in the next two years. In its third cabinet meeting just a day before completing a month, the Yogi government also decided to exclude sugarcane from the crop insurance scheme and form 12 clusters for its speedy implementation. The cabinet also decided to open a dozen more agriculture scientific centres throughout the state.
The Haryana government is not planning to give any compensation to the farmers who lost their produce to fire in the fields in this rabi harvest season. The state government is, however, considering giving insurance cover to crops against fire under the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojna (PMFBY). The matter is expected to come up for discussion in the state cabinet meeting on Tuesday.
The Communist Party of India (Marxist) on Monday demanded that the State government immediately release the pending crop insurance claim of the previous year to enable the farmers tide over the crisis situation. Speaking at a protest programme with hundreds of farmers and cadre, CPI(M) district secretary Rambhupal said that the government “just didn’t care for the lives of the farmers or for that matter anyone in the district” and the same attitude was apparent in its handling of the agrarian crisis and the drinking water scarcity in the district.
Fire broke out in wheat fields at six villages of Barnala, Moga and Fatehgarh Sahib districts and destroyed standing wheat crop over around 160 acres on Saturday. In Barnala, a fire was reported in the fields of three adjoining villages, which destroyed crop over around 100 acres. District chief agricultural officer Karnail Singh Sandhu said the fire, which was probably caused by sparking in the overhead electric cables, broke out in Khuddi, Sukhpura Maur and Dhilwan villages.
A herd of wild elephants entered the sugarcane fields near Krishnaiahna Katte at Biligiri Rangana Hills in the taluk and destroyed the standing crop, on Wednesday night. The sugarcane crop in four acres of survey number 254 which was destroyed belonged to one Shivashankarappa, a native of Gumballi village.
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