Crops suffer rain damage in Uttar Pradesh
For the farmers in the five districts of Agra division, it's been raining disaster the last few days, flattening the standing wheat and mustard crop and rotting potatoes that were about to be dug out.
Agra: For the farmers in the five districts of Agra division, it's been raining disaster the last few days, flattening the standing wheat and mustard crop and rotting potatoes that were about to be dug out.
The rains were accompanied by gusty winds and several rounds of hailstorms.
"The Holi fervour as of now is dented, the farmers are grief-stricken, many drained of the courage to even look at the state of their fields," said Fatehpur Sikri's Shiv Katara.
The state government has promised some sops and a survey is soon to be undertaken by the district administration but farmers do not have the faith or patience to run around for compensation, Katara, also a social activist of the area, added.
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav on Monday asked for reports of damage from the affected districts, after which a decision on the scale of compensation would be taken.
From Mainpuri to Mathura, Etah to Aligarh, its been a catastrophe of epic proportions on the eve of Holi, said SK Singh, a farmer of Ajitpur in Hathras district.
The fields are flooded with rain water and access-ways have been washed away.
To add to the woes of the people in the vast rural hinterland, the winter chill has returned and that has multiplied the number of sick people in the villages across the region, added Firozabad's Ram Sanehai Yadav.
The swine flu scare has only compounded problems.
On Monday, both Mainpuri and Agra districts were showered with hailstorm.
Large areas of wheat, mustard and potato crops are inundated with water due to three days of incessant rain. In more than 200 villages of Bah, Pinahat and Jaitpur blocks, the wheat and mustard crop has been almost totally damaged.
The potato crop in the Khandauli block, famous for its high yield and quality has also suffered extensive damage.
According to Aloo Kisan Vikas Samiti, the damage could be around 50 percent.
BJP district president Ashok Rana demanded immediate compensation to farmers in the Fatehpur Sikri and Kiraoli areas.
On late Monday night, Agra district was again lashed by heavy showers. Till Monday afternoon, the district had received close to 20mm of rainfall. Mathura, Firozabad, and Aligarh districts also received copious rain that has effectively disrupted normal life and hit Holi celebrations.