Unseasonal rains shatter farmers’ hope
Bhubaneswar: Unseasonal rain and hailstorm for the past few days has damaged standing crops which may adversely affect the production output thereby compounding miseries of farmers in several parts of Odisha.
Apart from the rabi field crops, vegetables mostly peas, tomatoes, bitter gourd, cucumber, brinjal have suffered damage in areas of Balang, Astarang, Gop, Kakatpur in Puri district.
The farmers of the district were hopeful of a bumper harvest but the untimely rain has shattered the hopes of farming community in the district.
“We are now harassed as bulk of the produce has been damaged in the rains,” said Dwijibar Sahu, a farmer.
“We completely depend on agriculture and have no alternative source of income. We had not anticipated such losses this time,” said Balkrushna Panda, another farmer.
The plight of farmers in Nabarangpur is also not different as they are now forced to go for distress sale of their produce. The middlemen and traders purchase these in cheaper rate in absence of proper storage facilities and food processing unit. The market demand has also marginally fall, the farmers rued.
“Despite investing lakhs in farming, we are not able to make profits as there is no adequate demand for the produce in the present situation. Besides, lack of storage and marketing options, we are facing lot of hardship,” said Sukumar Sarkar, a farmer.
The paddy farmers too are facing problems as there has been inordinate delay in procurement in Bhadrak district. The civil supplies department had targeted to procure paddy from 56,000 registered farmers through 108 societies, the process is yet to start in the district.
“Already we have procured 7.50 quintals out of the targeted 12 lakh quintals paddy and we hope to complete the process of procurement through societies at the earliest,” said Bhadrak Civil Supplies Officer (CSO) Rajkumar Sahoo.