Report Wire - Maharashtra: New crop ailments, unpredictable rainfall patterns add to woes of farmers

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Maharashtra: New crop ailments, unpredictable rainfall patterns add to woes of farmers

9 min read
Maharashtra: New crop diseases, unpredictable rainfall patterns add to woes of farmers

By IANS

PUNE (Maharashtra): As crop failure turns into a norm, farmers in Maharashtra wrestle to get entry to crop insurance coverage schemes for which on-line purposes needs to be submitted.

“Look at these rotten tomatoes. Forget taking a basketful to sell in the market, even finding a few that are good enough to consume has become a task,” stated Sashikant Ramdas Gogawale, a farmer from Gogalwadi in Pune’s Haveli taluka.

This 12 months, ola dushkal (moist famine) has rendered a blow to the farmers, who’re already going through the after-effects of crop injury through the pandemic. Wet famine is characterised by a scarcity of meals assets as a result of an excessive amount of rain. It is a situation the place crops, fruits or greens on a farm are broken, making them fully unfit for consumption or sale.

“We were not anticipating such a downpour. The tomato harvest was good until the pandemic. Disruption in farm work during the lockdown and loss of market access affected us badly. The subsequent spread of new diseases worsened our condition,” Sashikant defined his farm’s deterioration over the past two years.

He is absolutely conscious of the injury that insecticides and weedicides trigger in the long term. “Spraying too much pesticide is ruining the soil. But we have to use it to protect the current crop. This is the irony.”

Besides tomatoes, the mixed impression of the pandemic and moist famine is critical within the case of fig farmers. The fig harvest season in Gogalwadi begins in February. So when the primary Covid-19 wave hit India in March 2020 and led to a subsequent lockdown, the demand and gross sales dropped.

“We had no option but to consume as many fruits as possible. The rest were left unplucked, which caused the trees to rot from the inside. In fact, a new variant of crop disease started to affect the trees. It continues to infect the plants to date,” stated Shrikant Gogawale, whose household owns a fig farm within the village.

“One of my friends had over 300 fig trees. Now the number is down to around 50. A variant of Anthracnose, a fungal disease that emerged during the pandemic, destroyed most of them,” he added.

Even custard apples and guava bushes on Shrikant’s farm took a beating.

“All the fruits are turning black. These crops cannot withstand heavy rains. We plant and harvest according to the seasonal cycles. However, climate change has disrupted this pattern. Even foreseeing weather trends for a few upcoming weeks have become difficult,” he elaborated.

Gogalwadi has only a few ladies farmers. One can barely see a lady working within the fields right here.

“Actually, I am an Anganwadi teacher. At times, I work in these tomato fields to help out my husband. The fruits are rotting and they need to be picked and packed quickly because rains are again likely to pound this afternoon,” says Reshma Gogawale, Laxman Gogawale’s spouse.

Compensation eludes many

PIK Vima Yojana 2022, a crop insurance coverage initiative of the Maharashtra Government, goals at defending the meals producers within the State.

‘PIK Nuksan Bharpai’ (injury compensation) grants insurance coverage quantities to the beneficiaries to tide over the crop losses attributable to pure calamities. The Central Government additionally affords Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana, a scheme with an identical objective. However, farmers of Gogalwadi haven’t discovered these schemes very useful.

Dattatray Gogawale, a farmer who harvests a number of crops equivalent to jowar, rice, pulses, figs and onions, stated he was instructed to register on-line to get compensation for the injury brought about because of the lockdown and moist famine.

“A few of us have smartphones, but getting data network is difficult here. We are required to upload images of our farms to apply for compensation. Though we are educated, navigating through the online system is a challenge.”

Dattatray stated he was instructed to file a panchanama (proof of the disaster) when moist famine struck. “But even after doing it, no one reached out. If we do it offline also, the gram sevaks are supposed to pay a visit to the field and see if the farmer is eligible for crisis compensation. But they did not come,” he stated, pointing to the shortage of transparency.

When questioned about this, gram sevak Jyoti Tambe directed this reporter to Talathi Tamboli (Talathi refers to a income officer). “This is the officer assigned to visit the farms in Gogalwadi, note down the complaints, register panchanama and other documents required for Nuksan Bharpai Scheme,” Tambe stated. Multiple makes an attempt to achieve Tamboli proved to be futile.

‘E-Pik Pahani’, which implies checking the crops by means of the photographs uploaded on-line on the official authorities portal, is a service gram sevaks advocate farmers use for registering their broken farms for disaster compensation. However, sparse cellular community and lack of technical information have made farmers shrink back from making use of on-line for Nuksan Bharpai.

“At times, we visit the district office where our names and details are taken down. But the compensation amount does not reach us,” stated Dattatray’s household. To this, gram sevak Tambe acknowledged: “The officials concerned will be sent to the farm to examine its status. The compensation amount will be given if the farmer is eligible.”

However, the issues of farmers like Dattatray don’t finish with getting compensation. The newly rising crop ailments and unpredictable rainfall patterns have made farming unsustainable.

“We are investing in it by buying different types of pesticides and adopting agricultural technologies to improve crop health. But the rains are washing it all out. Forget about profit, we are not even getting back the invested amount,” Dattatray stated whereas reminiscing how easy farming was earlier. Seasonal cycles might be tracked then, and farmers used to have their plans chalked out for your entire 12 months.

“There is no doubt that our village is progressing. We have access to primary education. We have proper roads and most areas are well-lit. There are small clinics, where the services of doctors are available. But untimely rains are hampering progress,” stated Shrikant, calling consideration to waterlogging and injury brought about to roads.

Walking by means of his subject sporting a muddy raincoat and wiping the sweat from his forehead, Sashikant requested, “Take a photo of these fallen tomatoes. It captures the reality of why farmers commit suicide.”

PUNE (Maharashtra): As crop failure turns into a norm, farmers in Maharashtra wrestle to get entry to crop insurance coverage schemes for which on-line purposes needs to be submitted.

“Look at these rotten tomatoes. Forget taking a basketful to sell in the market, even finding a few that are good enough to consume has become a task,” stated Sashikant Ramdas Gogawale, a farmer from Gogalwadi in Pune’s Haveli taluka.

This 12 months, ola dushkal (moist famine) has rendered a blow to the farmers, who’re already going through the after-effects of crop injury through the pandemic. Wet famine is characterised by a scarcity of meals assets as a result of an excessive amount of rain. It is a situation the place crops, fruits or greens on a farm are broken, making them fully unfit for consumption or sale.

“We were not anticipating such a downpour. The tomato harvest was good until the pandemic. Disruption in farm work during the lockdown and loss of market access affected us badly. The subsequent spread of new diseases worsened our condition,” Sashikant defined his farm’s deterioration over the past two years.

He is absolutely conscious of the injury that insecticides and weedicides trigger in the long term. “Spraying too much pesticide is ruining the soil. But we have to use it to protect the current crop. This is the irony.”

Besides tomatoes, the mixed impression of the pandemic and moist famine is critical within the case of fig farmers. The fig harvest season in Gogalwadi begins in February. So when the primary Covid-19 wave hit India in March 2020 and led to a subsequent lockdown, the demand and gross sales dropped.

“We had no option but to consume as many fruits as possible. The rest were left unplucked, which caused the trees to rot from the inside. In fact, a new variant of crop disease started to affect the trees. It continues to infect the plants to date,” stated Shrikant Gogawale, whose household owns a fig farm within the village.

“One of my friends had over 300 fig trees. Now the number is down to around 50. A variant of Anthracnose, a fungal disease that emerged during the pandemic, destroyed most of them,” he added.

Even custard apples and guava bushes on Shrikant’s farm took a beating.

“All the fruits are turning black. These crops cannot withstand heavy rains. We plant and harvest according to the seasonal cycles. However, climate change has disrupted this pattern. Even foreseeing weather trends for a few upcoming weeks have become difficult,” he elaborated.

Gogalwadi has only a few ladies farmers. One can barely see a lady working within the fields right here.

“Actually, I am an Anganwadi teacher. At times, I work in these tomato fields to help out my husband. The fruits are rotting and they need to be picked and packed quickly because rains are again likely to pound this afternoon,” says Reshma Gogawale, Laxman Gogawale’s spouse.

Compensation eludes many

PIK Vima Yojana 2022, a crop insurance coverage initiative of the Maharashtra Government, goals at defending the meals producers within the State.

‘PIK Nuksan Bharpai’ (injury compensation) grants insurance coverage quantities to the beneficiaries to tide over the crop losses attributable to pure calamities. The Central Government additionally affords Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana, a scheme with an identical objective. However, farmers of Gogalwadi haven’t discovered these schemes very useful.

Dattatray Gogawale, a farmer who harvests a number of crops equivalent to jowar, rice, pulses, figs and onions, stated he was instructed to register on-line to get compensation for the injury brought about because of the lockdown and moist famine.

“A few of us have smartphones, but getting data network is difficult here. We are required to upload images of our farms to apply for compensation. Though we are educated, navigating through the online system is a challenge.”

Dattatray stated he was instructed to file a panchanama (proof of the disaster) when moist famine struck. “But even after doing it, no one reached out. If we do it offline also, the gram sevaks are supposed to pay a visit to the field and see if the farmer is eligible for crisis compensation. But they did not come,” he stated, pointing to the shortage of transparency.

When questioned about this, gram sevak Jyoti Tambe directed this reporter to Talathi Tamboli (Talathi refers to a income officer). “This is the officer assigned to visit the farms in Gogalwadi, note down the complaints, register panchanama and other documents required for Nuksan Bharpai Scheme,” Tambe stated. Multiple makes an attempt to achieve Tamboli proved to be futile.

‘E-Pik Pahani’, which implies checking the crops by means of the photographs uploaded on-line on the official authorities portal, is a service gram sevaks advocate farmers use for registering their broken farms for disaster compensation. However, sparse cellular community and lack of technical information have made farmers shrink back from making use of on-line for Nuksan Bharpai.

“At times, we visit the district office where our names and details are taken down. But the compensation amount does not reach us,” stated Dattatray’s household. To this, gram sevak Tambe acknowledged: “The officials concerned will be sent to the farm to examine its status. The compensation amount will be given if the farmer is eligible.”

However, the issues of farmers like Dattatray don’t finish with getting compensation. The newly rising crop ailments and unpredictable rainfall patterns have made farming unsustainable.

“We are investing in it by buying different types of pesticides and adopting agricultural technologies to improve crop health. But the rains are washing it all out. Forget about profit, we are not even getting back the invested amount,” Dattatray stated whereas reminiscing how easy farming was earlier. Seasonal cycles might be tracked then, and farmers used to have their plans chalked out for your entire 12 months.

“There is no doubt that our village is progressing. We have access to primary education. We have proper roads and most areas are well-lit. There are small clinics, where the services of doctors are available. But untimely rains are hampering progress,” stated Shrikant, calling consideration to waterlogging and injury brought about to roads.

Walking by means of his subject sporting a muddy raincoat and wiping the sweat from his forehead, Sashikant requested, “Take a photo of these fallen tomatoes. It captures the reality of why farmers commit suicide.”