Bhubaneswar: The Odisha government on Thursday declared 13,032 villages, which suffered a crop loss of 50 percent, in 19 districts as drought affected and announced a
special package for farmers.
"The drought areas are spread over 133 blocks and 156
wards of 34 urban local bodies in 19 of the 30 districts of
the state," Revenue and Disaster Management minister SN Patro
told reporters here.
Patro said the state government announced a special
package for affected farmers with agriculture input subsidy
The amount of subsidy for one hectare of non-irrigated
land has been increased to Rs 3,000 from Rs 2,000 and for
irrigated land from Rs 4,000 per hectare to Rs 6,000 and Rs
8,000 per hectare for all perennial crops, he said.
Subsidy for sericulture was also raised, he added.
The government has waived water tax and land cess by
50 percent on farmers in drought-hit areas. Farmers, however,
have to pay 50 percent of water tax and land cess next year,
It also decided to pay crop loss compensation to the
cultivators instead of land owners who would be identified,
the minister said.
The government has also decided to convert short-term
agriculture loan to medium-term loan. "The farmers who were
supposed to repay the loan after kharif crop can now repay in
three years," Patro said.
The ex-gratia amount during natural calamities have also
been raised. While Rs 1 lakh was earlier paid in a drowning
case, it has been now been increased to Rs 1.5 lakh, Patro