Bant: Even as cyclone Fani has caused large scale damage to vegetables in Bant block of Bhadrak district, hailstorms have come as a double whammy for farmers of the region. Farmers lamented that the administration has not yet started an assessment of the damage.
Rains and hailstorms have caused damage to rabi crop and vegetables in 6,000 hectares, while summer paddy has also been affected.
At various places, trees and utility poles have been uprooted, disrupting power supply.
Vegetable farmers were worst affected by hailstorms. “Hailstorms have damaged pumpkin, okra and bitter gourd cultivations. Recovering our losses is the main concern,” farmers said.
Vegetables were cultivated in 90 per cent of cultivable land in Gandkura, Gopalpur, Ganijang, Kusunpur, Palasa, Chhyalsingh, Dousingh, Bharsinghpur, Tumbapadi, Rasunapadi and Suanpada.
Farmers Manas Jena, Sushant Giri, Shyam Jena, Rabindra Giri and Chandrakant Mandal demanded that the government provide immediate help to them.
“Last year, I had earned Rs 1.5 lakh from vegetable cultivation. This year, I had hoped for better harvest, but the hailstorms spoiled it all,” Manas Jena lamented. He added that recouping the loss is impossible.
Block agriculture officer Ramesh Ray said farmers have alleged large scale damage to vegetables in Bant. Steps will be taken to assess the damage as per government guidelines, he added.