Bolangir/Boudh: Farmers in several parts of the State have been in distress following widespread crop loss due to unseasonal rainfall triggered by cyclonic storm Phethai.

The unseasonal rains have not only caused damage to standing crops in several regions of the state but also destroyed harvested crops stashed on open fields.

As the year-long efforts to cultivate cops have failed, farmers allege lack of government assistance and awareness for protecting their standing and harvested crops.

This apart, amid several issues like paddy FAQ, improper functioning of mandis, farmers are concerned whether they can sell their produce at the mandis or they might have to go for distress sale.

"I have availed farm loans for agricultural purposes but now worried as to how to repay them after this season’s crop loss," Rabi Chandra Sahu, a farmer of Loisingha stated.

Chaitanya Meher, a farmer of Patnagarh who grows cotton also expressed his concerns saying that his produce will be of no use since unseasonal rain renders cotton farming useless.

Meanwhile, government officials have assured the farmers that damage assessment is underway and farmers who incurred losses will be given adequate compensation as per the norms.

"Damage assessment is being done to study crop losses and accordingly reports will be submitted to the higher-ups for necessary action," Additional Agriculture Officer of Boudh district Narayan Mahananda said.

Expressing similar views, Deputy Director of Agriculture, Bolangir, Sreedhara Das stated farmers have been advised to shift their crops to dry places and spray salt water if there are chances of germination of crops.