Amphan damages nearly 3L hectares of farmland in Bengal

Amphan damages nearly 3 lakh hectares of farmland in Bengal

A farmer tries to recover harvested paddy bunches from a flooded field after rains caused by Cyclone Amphan, at Ranaghat in Nadia district. (PTI photo)

Cyclone Ampan has dealt a severe blow to the agriculture sector in West Bengal. The storm damaged nearly 3 lakh hectares of farmland in the state. Bengal is now staring at a huge financial loss in the sector, amounting to several thousand crores of rupees.

Speaking to DH, Agriculture Minister Asish Banerjee said “ we are yet to completely assess the damage but overall it will run into several thousand crores.”

Nearly 1.39 lakh hectares of farmland has been damaged by the cyclone in the North 24 Paraganas district. The storm has flattened paddy fields and farmlands growing vegetables in areas such as Bongaon, Bagda and Deganga in the district.

According to sources in the district administration, the extent of the damage can be gauged from the fact that the storm went ravaged an area of nearly 4000 square km in the district. More than 30 lakh people were affected in 22 blocks, 25 municipalities and one municipal corporation area in the district. Cultivation of pulses and jute has also been badly hit in the district.

As per initial estimates nearly 1 lakh hectare of farmland has been damaged by the storm in the Hooghly district. Mainly paddy, vegetable and mango orchards have been damaged in the district casing a loss of a whopping Rs. 600 crores. The storm has damaged at least 18,000 hectares of farmland in Howrah districts based on initial estimates.

The cyclone destroyed 24,200 hectares of farmland in East Medinipur district, according to sources in the district administration. They also said that this was just an initial estimate and the total loss would be much higher. Mainly pulses, vegetable and flower cultivation has been affected in the district.

Facing such massive losses, farmers in the affected districts have demanded compensation from the state government. Sources in the state administration said that the demand would be looked into after total assessment of the damage was complete.  


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