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The widespread rainfall : raised hopes of a good samba paddy cultivation

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The widespread rainfall and water flow in Cauvery Mettur Project (CMP) canal in Sethubavachthram and Peravurani blocks in Thanjavur district and Aranthangi taluk in Pudukottai district have raised hopes of a good samba paddy season this year after a long time.

The rain has brought in some inflow to the tanks in the blocks and also the good storage position in Mettur reservoir, which holds out the promise of continued release of water for the entire season has spurred many farmers, who had stayed away from paddy over the past few years, to take up cultivation.

Though Pattukottai and Pervurani areas still remain a coconut growing belt, farm workers could be seen transplanting paddy in many a field situated between big coconut groves. “The rain has helped improve the groundwater table and farmers like me here are tapping borewells to raise paddy. I have cultivated paddy on four acres this season,” said S. R. S. Venkataraman of Pallathur near Pattukottai.However, a few farmers pointed out to the meagre flow in the CMP canal and said they needed more water.

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They also wanted the officials to release water continuously rather than adopting the turn system.A senior Agriculture Department official said that the prevailing situation in the CMP area, aided by the rain, could lead to an increase in area under paddy in Sethubavachathram and Peravurani blocks. “People say that the tanks in the area have got good storage after several years. Normally, they do not get water in October,” he said. The blocks account for about 4,500 hectares (ha) usually.

This year, it may go up to 5,000 ha.In Pudukottai district, about 37,500 ha is expected to be covered in the CMP areas.Meanwhile, officials in Thanjavur district said the samba paddy crop was in good condition. So far, samba paddy has been raised on about 93,000 ha. Thaladi crop has been raised on 23,000 ha. Another 10,000 ha is expected to be covered under samba and 7,000 ha under thaladi in the district, Joint Director of Agriculture A. Justin said.Agriculture officials while affirming that there was no shortage of urea in the district, however, urged farmers to use the fertilizer judiciously. Only 22 kg of urea should be used as top dressing. Otherwise the crop might become susceptible to pest attacks, Mr. Justin said.

(source : The Hindu)

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