Rasulpur: Farmers of Rasulpur area in Jajpur district have been suffering loss in agriculture for the last ten years. They attribute their problem to the rainwater standing for days in their fields due to the silting up of Kandasara drain.
The central and the state governments are spending crores on the development of farming and farmers. But the benefits elude some, like the ones in Rasulpur.
Over one thousand farmers of Berhampur, Bhagbhagbana, Jenapur, Bhandaripada, Kandasara, Barlangi, Baunsaanta, Sarangpur, Bhagirathpur, Dananibar, Bagadian, Dianachak, Sukadeipur and Manpur villages of Sribantpur and Jabara panchayt under Rasulpur block have about seven acres of arable land in Berhampur, Maragadia, Kalimagada and Kakudia. The excess rain water from their farmlands and villages used to run into Dudhei canal via Kandasara drain.
But for the last ten years, this process of draining out of rainwater has been stopped. It is because the Kandasara drain has been silted up. This apart, the alleged faulty structure of a culvert constructed over the drain is another reason for obstructing the free flow of water in the drain.
Not de-silting of the drain and the alleged faulty structure are the reasons why the farm lands remain inundated for days together, severely affecting the standing crops.
The long-term paddy sown in the Kharif season cannot be harvested due to inundation. Similarly, the high lands where autumn (Biali) paddy is cultivated are not ready for vegetable and groundnut crops in Rabi season due to the moisture content of the soil.
“For these reasons over 400 acres of farmlands lie fallow every year. We have taken up the problem with the concerned officials but to no avail. During election times, political leaders do visit our village; promise us early solution to the problem. But after election, they tend to appear once in a blue moon,” alleged farmers including Duryodhan Samal, Gangadhar Samal, Panchanan Samal, Ishwar Jena and some others.
The farmers threatened to resort to agitation if the drain is not desilted before Rabi season.