Jaya appeals to farmers not to take 'extreme step'

As her government is engaged in a legal battle to secure its share of Cauvery water from Karnataka, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa today requested the farmers "not to take any extreme step" in the event of crop failure.

"I will not tolerate our farmers to suffer even if the nature fails, Karnataka betrays and the Centre shows no concern (on State getting water)", she said, in a statement amid reports of farmers committing suicide in some parts of the State.

Recalling her government's decision to announce a special package of around Rs 69.88 crore to provide succour to the farmers in the Cauvery delta region, she appealed to the farmers "not to worry and not to take any extreme step" in the wake of crop failure.

Describing her government as the "protector" of farmers, she said, "the government will give the entire relief amount to those farmers who cannot save the samba (long term crop) crops".

She reiterated that her government will give Rs 13,692 as relief per acre to farmers from the National Agriculture Insurance scheme and disaster relief fund in case of crop failure. The Chief Minister hoped that the Supreme Court would give a favourable decision when Tamil Nadu's petition seeking release of minimum 18 tmc ft of water from Karnataka comes up for hearing on January four.

She said the three phase of power supply to delta farmers given at present, would continue till the end of cultivation of samba crop. In the wake of alleged suicide of farmers, MPs of DMK and AIADMK locked horns in the Lok Sabha last week on the issue.

While DMK members alleged that more than seven farmers had committed suicide, AIADMK members dismissed the charge, saying there were no suicide of farmers.

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