Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami on Friday announced a subsidy package for direct sowing of paddy for farmers. Encouraging farmers to take up direct sowing, the Chief Minister declared Rs 600 per acre. Direct sowing, as the name suggests, would involve paddy being sown and sprouted directly in the field, as opposed to the usual method of cultivating saplings in a nursery and planting them in the field.
Stating that this would reduce water consumption, the Chief Minister estimated that around 40 to 45 tmc ft would be saved, according to one report in The New Indian Express. â€śAcross Tamil Nadu, paddy cultivation is taken up in 43.50 lakh acres and in delta districts, in 13 lakh acres. Delta districts use water from Mettur dam for irrigation. When direct sowing is adopted, significant quantum of water will be saved. I appeal to the farmers in delta districts as well as those in other districts who adopt direct sowing, to avail the plough subsidy,â€ť a statement from the Chief Minister said.
According to one report in the Times of India, the Agriculture Department has been instructed to store adequate stock of crop varieties like the Ponmani CR 1009, CR 1009 Sub 1, CO 51 and TKM 13.
Earlier in the month, the Chief Minister oversaw the opening of the sluice gates of the Mettur dam in Salem. The dam, which receives water from the Cauvery witnessed massive inflows thanks to heavy rainfall in the catchment areas of the river in Kodagu, Karnataka. The shutters of the dam ought to have been opened on June 12 for Samba crop cultivation. However, the water level at the dam was inadequate at below 50 feet. The latest influx of water, it is hoped, would be a relief to the delta belt of the state where 43.4 lakh of crops are cultivated.