Jaleswar: Farmers in north Balasore have been left high and dry after back-to-back floods played havoc to kharif paddy. Affected farmers have demanded re-assessment of crop damage in the district, a report said.
According to reports, floods from Subarnarekha had left large tract of farmlands in Jaleswar, Bhograi and Baliapal blocks inundated.
The problem was the flood water remained stagnant for days together, causing paddy plants to rot. Farmers lamented that the floodwater did not drain out into the sea as water from West Bengal became a hurdle.
Repeated floods completely damaged the paddy farming in the north Balasore. Farmlands are still waterlogged. The extent of damage could be known only after floodwater recedes from these areas.
Official sources said, paddy was cultivated in 20,055 hectares of land in Jaleswar. Owing to lowpressure induced rains and floods, 3500 hectares of farmlands remained submerged under water for a long time.
Following repeated demands by the flood affected people for assessment of the crop damage, the agriculture and revenue departments had jointly carried out survey.
Assistant agriculture officer Rajlaxmi Mohanty said 941 hectares of farmland has suffered less than 33 percent damage while over 33 percent damage was recorded in 555 hectares.
According to the agriculture department, 9850 hectares of land out of a total of 15837 hectares remained submerged under floodwater for over 10 days. Paddy plants in the farmlands have been damaged.
District agriculture officer Chandra Sekhar Padhi said nonpaddy crops in 113 hectares have also suffered damage due to floods. In Baliapal, paddy farming in 200 hectares has been completely damaged.
However, many farmers in all the three blocks alleged that the survey report as submitted by the agriculture department was faulty and far from reality.
They have demanded further survey on the extent of damage to paddy farming in the flood-affected areas. If properly assessed, the extent of damage will exceed the damage shown by the department, they added.