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Water released in irrigation canals

With the Public Works Department starting to releasing water in irrigation canals in the region on Saturday, farmers in the canal irrigated areas of the district are gearing up for samba paddy cultivation.

Water was released from Mayanur barrage in the North and South Bank canals, Krishnarayapuram canal and the Kattalai High Level Canal (KHLC). However, water was yet to be released in the New Kattalai High Level Canal (NKHLC) pending the government approval.

A senior PWD official said permission had been sought from the government for releasing water in the NKHLC and it was expected by Monday or Tuesday.

Expressing happiness over the release of water in the canals, Puliyur A.Nagarajan, president, farmers wing of the Tamil Maanilla Congress, however, said water had not been released in Pullampadi canal too and urged the PWD officials to ensure that water was released in the two canals at the earliest.

“Around three lakh acres will be irrigated through 17 canals in Namakkal, Karur, Tiruchi and Thanjavur districts,” he said.

R.Subramanian, Deputy Secretary, Cauvery Delta Farmers Welfare Association, urged the PWD authorities to ensure that the water reached the tail-end areas of the KHLC downstream of the Nachalur regulator so as to ensure farmers take up samba paddy cultivation.

Agriculture Department officials are confident that the normal area of coverage would be achieved in the district, after last year’s decline due to the drought like conditions. “With the water being released from Mettur and prediction of a good North East monsoon, we are confident of a good crop this season,”said S.M.Uduman Mohideen, Joint Director of Agriculture.

According to officials, normally samba paddy is raised on about 48,700 hectares, of which about 38,400 hectares is in the canal-irrigated delta area of the district.

Farmers too are hopeful of a good harvest this season. “I am confident that this will be a good season for us,” said S.Govindarajan of Kondayampettai, who was busy channelising water from the Srirangam Nattu Vaical to his field on Saturday.

Mr.Govindarajan, who did not raise paddy last samba season, said he had already raised nurseries using borewell water and would transplant the same before Deepavali as water had been released in the canal. Like most farmers in the district, he has gone in for the Andhra Ponni variety, which was hit by blast disease a couple of years ago in the district.

Despite the Agriculture Department advising them not to go in for the variety due to its susceptibility due to blast disease, many farmers prefer the variety as it is much sought after by private traders and fetches good returns.

Mr.Mohideen said that the department had been recommending farmers TKM-13, a variety similar to Andhra Ponni but resistant to blast disease.


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