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Kuruvai prospects look up as groundwater level rises

Transplantation work gets under way in paddy fields in Tiruchi district.M. SrinathM_SRINATH

The groundwater table in a few blocks in the district has improved due to frequent rain and this has raised the hope that the ‘kuruvai’ paddy cultivation target for the district would be surpassed.

According to official sources, the Agricultural department has set a target of bringing 2,000 acres under kuruvai cultivation this year. Of it, the department plans to extend financial assistance to farmers taking up mechanical transplantation in about 1,000 acres in the district this year.

It has identified Lalgudi, Thiruverumbur, Anthanallur, Manikandam, Musiri and Mannachanallur blocks, where farmers have pump set irrigation facilities, suitable for raising paddy cultivation during kuruvai season this year thanks to the comfortable groundwater table near the filter points in these blocks.

Officials say that chances are bright for bringing 1,000 hectares more, in addition to the target of 2,000 hectares, under paddy cultivation during 'kuruvai' season.

They cite frequent rains, increase in groundwater table and favourable climatic condition for more rainy days during the current southwest monsoon as reasons for surpassing kuruvai target.

Pointing to the recent rains, officials said that most of the blocks along the Cauvery riverbed including Musiri, Lalgudi, Mannachanallur, Thiruverumbur and Manikandam have received moderate to good rain so far since May.

The region received 125 mm rainfall during summer months from March to May and received 110.8 mm rainfall in May alone.

This has resulted in good recharge of filter points and filling up of small and medium ponds and tanks, thereby opening up avenues for tapping groundwater for the kuruvai paddy crop.

A senior official of the Agricultural Department told The Hindu that more than 1,500 hectares, out of 2,000 hectares, had already been brought under paddy cultivation during the current season.

It was expected that paddy transplantation would be completed on the remaining 500 hectares within a fortnight.

Field report suggested that farmers had raised nurseries to bring 1,000 hectares under paddy cultivation in 'kuruvai season'.

The official said the distribution of financial assistance to the farmers, who opted for mechanical transplantation under the kuruvai package, had also gained momentum. The State government had sanctioned Rs. 1.01 crore to the district under the kuruvai package.

A sum of Rs. 4,000 an acre would be paid to farmers as financial assistance for mechanical transplantation in addition to few more components.

Farmers could get 50% subsidy for buying diesel engine, he added.

Distribution of financial assistance to the farmers, who have opted for mechanical transplantation under the kuruvai package, has gained momentum.


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