Special Relief Commissioner (SRC) Pradeep Jena on Saturday said that the crop loss caused by cyclone Jawad-induced rainfall will be assessed within a week after the impact of the cyclone ended.
The SRC did not rule out the possibility of crop loss in coastal areas due to incessant rainfall. Standing paddy crop and vegetables will bear the maximum brunt. The assessment of crop loss will be carried out within a week after the impact of the cyclone had gone by. The government will then take a call on compensation.
With cyclone Jawad losing intensity, there is not so much fear among people, except for farmers in Puri, Ganjam, Khordha, Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara and Bhadrak districts. They are staring at huge crop loss prospects.
Meanwhile, they may heave a sigh of relief after hearing the SRC’s announcement.
A farmer in Brahmagiri area in Puri district said in teary eyes that the farmers’ year-long labour is destined to go down the drain. “Putting their heart and soul, farmers grow paddy and vegetables. Just when they hope for a bumper harvest, let alone heavy downpour, even a drizzle can cause substantial damage to the crops, dashing their hop to the ground,” he rued.
In Konark and Pipili areas in Puri district, a common scene of paddy plants lying down in the fields in water will make anyone feel sad for the farmers. The ripe panicles are submerged in water. The fate of the vegetable growers is not different either.
“The water in fields will take at least 10 to 12 days to dry up. By then, the paddy will sprout. We are sure to lose our paddy crop that would otherwise have seen us through the next one year,” lamented a farmer at Konark in Puri district.
Echoing the same, a farmer at Dandamukundapur village in Pipili alleged the government’s help is nothing in comparison to the money and labour the farmers have put into. “Right now, we are worried about how we would repay the loans and manage our families,” he said.
The cyclone-induced rainfall has also played spoilsport for farmers in districts like Ganjam, Khordha, Jagatsinghpur, Bhadrak, Rayagada, Mayurbhanj and Kendrapada. In these districts, a common scene of farmers carrying harvested paddy plants hurriedly to safety and covering up paddy stacks with polythene sheets can be seen everywhere.
“The district administration completed its duty by asking us to take the harvested crops to safety through public address system. What is the use of it?,” asked a farmer in Jagatsinghpur.