Sudden rains delay wheat harvesting in Terai belt
Farmers in the Terai region of Uttarakhand are disappointed after the untimely rains on Sunday, followed by fresh showers on Mondaydehradun Updated: Apr 09, 2018 22:12 IST
Farmers in the Terai region of Uttarakhand are disappointed after the untimely rains on Sunday, followed by fresh showers on Monday.
The wheat crop is ready to be harvested, but the sudden rains have delayed the process.
“Farmers can’t harvest their crops as it is wet. They fear the crop can be damaged and grain can turn blackish if the rain continues,” said Umesh Tiwari, a farmer from Khatima. He said a few farmers have harvested the crop, but most of them are now worried due to the sudden rains.
Udham Singh Nagar district is considered the food bowl of Uttarakhand. This year, the wheat crop has been shown on 93,338 hectares in the district.
DS Napalchyal, the super nodal officer appointed by US Nagar district magistrate Neeraj Khairwal for wheat purchase in the district, claimed that the purchasing of wheat has been started since April 1 at 104 centres set up by the government agencies. The central government has fixed the minimum support price (MSP) for wheat at Rs 1,735 per quintal.
The MSP is the rate of a crop at which the government buys the crop from farmers. It’s a safeguard to prevent exploitation of farmers at the hands of private players.
The state government has fixed a target to procure 2.21 lakh metric tonne wheat in the current rabi season.
“All equipment and the gunny bags have been provided at centres. Purchase is delayed due to bad weather. Farmers will start coming at centres by the next week if the weather supports them,” said Napalchyal, adding that, “Wheat with 12 percent moisture is accepted at the centres. To measure the moister, digital equipment have been provided at the centres.”
Meanwhile, the meteorological department has forecast showers in the state also on Tuesday due to “western disturbance”.
Advice for farmers
US Nagar’s chief agriculture officer Abhay Saxena said, “Farmers are advised, if they have suffered loss due to rain and hail storm and have already insured their crop, they can contact agricultural officials as well as the insurance company within 48 hours, so that their loss could be evaluated. They will get compensation under the Prime Minister Crop Insurance Scheme.”