Bangalore: Karnataka Chief Minister DV Sadananda Gowda has urged the Centre to announce a special
package for potato farmers and also establish a potato
research station in Hassan, the home district of former Prime
Minister H D Deve Gowda.
In a representation to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and
Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, he noted the recent letter
of Deve Gowda, Hassan MP, regarding damage caused to
commercial crops such as potato, cardamom, ginger, turmeric
and tur dal crops in Karnataka particularly in Hassan
"He (Deve Gowda) has narrated in detail the extensive
damage to the potato crop due to attack of Late Blight Disease
continuously for the last four years and the untold miseries
faced by the farmers of the District.
"... potato is a major cash crop in Hassan district and
this is the only district in the entire country which grows
potato predominantly during Kharif season as rain fed crop. ..
the entire financial stability of the farmers depend entirely
on this crop," the Chief Minister said in letters to Singh and
Though the state Government has provided relief under
Calamity Relief Fund to the affected farmers, it is not enough
to mitigate the suffering of the farmers growing potato, the
Chief Minister said.
"Hence, it is only appropriate that Government of India
announces a special package to farmers either in the form of
loan waiver or provide interest free loan and also enhance the
scale of compensation under Calamity Relief Fund so as to at
least cover the cost of cultivation?, he said.