Even as residents of Hyderabad received much-needed respite from the heat, with heavy rainfall and hailstorms, the unseasonal showers spelt misery for farmers across the state as it destroyed crops over several thousand hectares.
According to reports, 16 districts in Telangana have reported more than 37,000 hectares of damaged crops, including 30,000 hectares of paddy, 7,000 hectares of maize, 700 hectares of mango, 64 hectares of vegetables, 50 hectares of lemon and two hectares of papaya.
The farmers who grew mango trees and were all set for the upcoming harvest season were hit the hardest, as fast winds and hailstones damaged fruits in several areas in Khammam district, which is known for its mango plantations.
It was not just standing crops that were damaged, but the unexpected rains also damaged large quantities of chillies that had been kept in the open for drying. The entire produce of many farmers was soaked in rainwater due to the showers.
Taking the large-scale destruction into account, Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao on Monday spoke to Chief Secretary SK Joshi and instructed officials to take all necessary measures.
"Since the government is ready to give input subsidy to farmers who suffered losses, reports should be prepared and sent to the government forthwith," the Chief Minister was quoted as saying.
On KCR's instructions, SK Joshi spoke to all District Collectors in the state and asked them to prepare detailed reports on the crop loss and assess the total damage.
Officials of the Agriculture Department will soon begin a survey to analyse the extent of the damage to the crops and recommend adequate compensation.
Addressing reporters, Irrigation Minister T Harish Rao also assured farmers that the state government would stand by them.
Stating that they had distributed Rs 11 crore for such damages last year during unexpected rainfall, Harish Rao said, â€œEvery effort will be made to ensure that the crop damage compensation is paid to the farmers along with input subsidy promised by the government."