Sunflower, tur crops wither as rains fail

Farmers face economic ruin with continued effects of drought

Sunflower, tur crops wither as rains fail

Districts dependent on the retreating monsoon for rabi crops may have to face drought for the second consecutive year. Farmers in Bellary, Siruguppa, Hospet and Sandur taluks, who have begun sowing groundnut, sorghum, tur and sunflower in October first week, are still waiting for the rains.

A few farmers who have completed sowing in the wake of sparse rains in September-end are now a worried lot as their crops are withering.

This rabi season, sowing has taken place only in 25 to 30 per cent of land as against the target of 1.65 lakh hectare in the district, said sources in the department of agriculture.

Retreating monsoon, moreover, is crucial to protecting cotton, chillies and other kharif crops from pests, said Mahabaleshwarappa, an agriculture officer.

Thus, farmers in Hoovinahadagali, Kudligi, Hagaribommanahalli and Sandur taluks, who are dependent on monsoon, and those in Bellary, Siruguppa, Hospet and Sandur taluks in the district, who look forward to retreating monsoon, are both affected.

Economic damage
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Lack of rains has also deprived agriculture workers of their daily wages, in the absence of any work.

Amara Gowda, a farmer from Amarapura village in the taluk, said that hopes of rabi crop too have been dashed.

“Farmers like me who have lost the kharif crops also have to bear the loss of rabi crops. We will incur huge losses if it fails to rain next week,” he said.

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