Calamity-hit farmers say compensation is meagre

Calamity-hit farmers say compensation is meagre

A coffee plantation near Hattihole in Somwarpet taluk is buried under the debris, following landslides.

Heavily disappointed by the compensation provided by the district administration for agricultural land lost due to natural calamity, the affected people have decided to conduct protests against the government's move.

People, whose coffee plantations and paddy fields have been washed away by the disastrous floods and landslides in the month of August last year, are expected to receive a justified amount as compensation. But now, the government's compensation package has left them dissatisfied. Many farmers are yet to receive the compensation amount.

The farmers are of the opinion that the currently available compensation from the Centre and the state, put together, is not even sufficient to clear the debris and to level the land.

As much as 551 hectares of agricultural land was devastated by the flash floods and landslides. The land could not be used for cultivation for the next ten years and the land has lost its fertility and also the capacity to retain moisture. Lakhs of rupees are required to revive the land, the farmers affected by the natural calamity said.

The Growers' Federation had requested the Union government to announce an exclusive compensation package for Kodagu district. But the Centre has released Rs 546 crore package to Kodagu, Hassan, Chikkamagaluru, Dakshina Kannada and Udupi districts, in total.

The coffee planters, who have lost their land, are eligible to receive Rs 18,500 per hectare of land, from the National Disaster Relief Fund. An amount of Rs 6,500 will be available per hectare if the land is filled with silt. But, this amount is applicable to only two hectares of land.

An official said that 62,735 applications towards agricultural land compensation, have been linked to the compensation software. As many as 1,277 farmers have been provided with a compensation amount of Rs 74 lakh so far. The compensation amount is being credited to the bank accounts of the farmers.