The Inter-ministerial Central Study Team visiting the drought-hit areas in Jewargi Taluks were greeted with stories of distress and the withering crops and the queries from the farmers, with burnt fingers, as to when would they get the compensation for the loss suffered due to the failure of rains.
The Union Government had deputed a 10-member Inter-Ministerial Central Study Team headed by R.B. Sinha, Joint Secretary of the Department of Agriculture and Cooperation to study the loss suffered in different parts of the state due to the failure of the rains and submit their report at the earliest. The team has been divided to four groups and are currently touring Bengaluru (Rural) and (Urban) districts, Tumkuru, Ramnagar, Hassan, Kolar, Chikballapur, Bidar, Kalaburagi and Yadgir districts from November 19.
Two members of the team Vijaykumar Batla, Assistant Advisor to the Drinking Water and Sanitation Secretariat, and Deputy Commissioner in the Animal Husbandry Department R.K. Gupta visited Aurad, Chigralli, Ijeri, and Yalwar villages in Jewargi taluk. The team had visited the drought-hit villages in Bidar on Thursday.
The farmers like Raju Thippanna who had taken six acres of land on lease in Aurad village and Basappa Madar of Chigaralli village told the team members that they do not have any hope of getting any returns for all the investment made and their toil this year. “Over and above this we would have to borrow money to harvest whatever little left in the field”.
The Central Study team members accompanied by the Deputy Commissioenr Vipul Bansal, told the worried farmers that they were convinced that the loss has been extensive due to the failure of the rains and they would report the actual fact what they have seen in their report to the government.
The team members also wanted to know why the farmers have preferred to grow cotton, which is not usually grown in Jewargi taluk. “This is not a cotton area…probably you have grown this crop after you got good returns in the last two years”.
Earlier, few farmers from other villages of Jewargi led by Basavaraj Patil Naribol, former Zilla panchayat member took serious exception to the central study team not visiting all the affected villages in the taluk. Deputy Commissioner Mr. Bansal admonished him and said that it was not proper to speak like that to the central study team, which had selected the villages to be visited based on the inputs they have received.
The Central Study team members assured the agitated farmers that during their tour they would see the affected areas and submit a factual report and get adequate compensation to the farmers. The team members would meet in Bengaluru on November 22 and consolidate the report before meeting the Principal Secretary of the Agriculture Department. Immediately on their return they would submit their report to the Union Government.