Chennai: The Tamil Nadu government will provide Rs 1,116.97 crore as input relief to about 11.43 lakh farmers across the state, anticipating central assistance, for the crop loss of the ryots due to rains in January, Chief Minister K Palaniswami said on Monday. The relief sum will be credited directly to their bank accounts, he said in a statement.
Owing to the heavy rains last month, a total of 6,62,689 hectares of agricultural crops besides 18,645 hectares of horticultural crops were damaged, the chief minister said. "Taking a considerate view of the farmers' plight, my government has already announced a relief higher and above the ceiling permitted by the state disaster relief fund guidelines, to the ryots affected by cyclones Nivar and Burevi," Palaniswami said.
Accordingly, the input relief for rain-fed and irrigated paddy crop and other irrigated crops was enhanced to Rs 20,000 from Rs 13,500 per hectare. While the relief for all rain-fed crops, except rain-fed paddy, was hiked to Rs 10,000 from Rs 7,410 per hectare, the relief for the perennial crops was increased to Rs 25,000 from Rs 18,000 per hectare.
He informed that a Central will visit Tamil Nadu again from February 3-5 to assess the extent of crop loss of farmers. Listing out the measures launched by his government to mitigate the conditions of the farmers, Palaniswami said shortly after cyclone Nivar made a landfall near Puducherry on November 25 and 26 last year, Tamil Nadu was hit by the Burevi storm even as relief and rehabilitation activities were on.
"Due to the precautionary measures taken by my government, human casualties and damage to livestock during Nivar and Burevi storms were largely averted. However, both Nivar and Burevi cyclones caused severe damage to power infrastructure, while roads in many parts of the state were breached or damaged. Further, agricultural and horticultural crops too were severely damaged," he said.. "Normalcy returned to the storm-affected districts due to the rescue and relief operations carried out on my advice," the chief minister added.
A total financial assistance of Rs 3,750.38 crore including Rs 641.83 crore for temporary repairs and Rs 3,108.55 crore for permanent repairs will be required from the Central government. In addition, Rs 485 crore has been earmarked for temporary repairs and Rs 1,029 crore for permanent repair works.