Thursday, 7 July 2011

Least rains affect cultivation in vidarbha-TIMES OF INDIA

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Least rains affect cultivation

NAGPUR: The state cabinet while taking stock of the kharif crop situation on Wednesday noted that except for five districts in western Maharashtra, most parts of the state have received rainfall below the season's average for the period. Of the 355 talukas in the state, 22 have recorded less than 20% rains.

Reports of scanty rainfall in many areas delaying sowing operations for the kharif crop which begins in June first week prompted a special review of the situation by the cabinet of ministers. The meeting was informed that out of the cultivable land of 132.34 lakh hectares, sowing could be completed in only 28.26 lakh hectares or just in 21% of the total land.

The meeting was told that almost all districts in Vidarbha had scanty rainfall ranging from 40 to 60% of the season's average. The situation for agriculture was very good in Kokan area as well as Kolhapur and Pune districts where it has rained around 120% of the average for that area. Paddy crop is at the nursery stage and in some areas it has already been transplanted. Sowing of groundnut, soyabean and jowar has also been taken up In Kolhapur district.

While 22 talukas got less than 20% rains, 78 talukas recorded 20 to 40% rains, 79 talukas got between 40 and 60%, another 67 talukas got between 60 and 80% of rains and 47 talukas had around 100% , 62 talukas received more that 100% of the rainfall in the current season. The meeting was also informed that there was adequate supply of chemical fertilizers and seeds.

Meanwhile, reports from Vidarbha's suicide-prone Yavatmal district indicated that farmers may have to go in for resowing in at least 40% of the areas where seeds were sown last month. The district initially received good rains but the subsequent dry spell has resulted in rodents and pest destroying the seeds in the soil. This has mainly hit the turf which is taken up as intercrop with cotton.

"Bt cotton seeds are already in short supply and farmers had to pay a premium of Rs 300 to Rs 500 extra as premium to get the preferred brands, Now if the seeds sown are wasted and re-sowing has to be done, it will add further strain to the already distressed farmers in the cotton belt," said Anil Tiwari, a prominent farmer from Pandharkawda.

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