ANI Photo | Andhra Pradesh: Opposition leaders hold meeting against government’s management of Cyclone Michaung and drought

In a significant All Party Round table meeting convened at Vijayawada Dasari Bhavan on December 9, leaders from the CPI Rashtra Samithi, expressed deep concern over the havoc wreaked by Cyclone Michaung in various parts of the state.
AP Congress State President Gidugu Rudra Raju said, “The situation is very alarming in Andhra Pradesh. Earlier, there was a drought and now, due to heavy rains, crops have been damaged. The Chief Minister and Revenue Department are not taking care of the people. As congress members, we have attended this all-party round table conference. On December 11, we have a roundtable across the state. On 14, we have dharna in the collectorate across various districts. We demand the government to release crop damage per acre Rs 50000.”
The Congress leader further highlighted that more than 20 lakh acres of crops have suffered extensive damage, far surpassing the government’s conservative estimate of 1.47 lakh hectares. Houses and properties lie in ruins, with potholed roads further deteriorating, causing severe disruptions to transportation.
AP CPM State Secretary V Srinivas Rao said, “The centre and state governments both have failed to meet the requirements of the people who are suffering in the cyclone and drought-hit areas. In 8 districts there are a number of mandals where crops have been damaged but till now the government has not taken any action. Moreover, the drainage system is the prime cause for most of the paddy damage in the Krishna delta. During the last 20 years, the government has not taken and initiative for drainage maintenance. The government has to release funds Rs 25000 per acre for tenant farmers.”
The roundtable meeting, attended by leaders from various parties, presented several demands, which included recognition of cyclone and drought damage as national calamities and an immediate allocation of Rs 1000 crore to the state. Rigorous identification and enumeration of damaged crops to prevent irregularities, prioritising tenant farmers. Declaration of 470 mandals with low rainfall as drought-prone. Compensation of Rs 40,000 per acre for food crops, Rs 75,000 for commercial crops, and Rs 1 lakh per acre for horticultural crops, aligned with current production costs and application of crop insurance to all crops.
The demands also include a complete waiver of all loans for farmers and tenant farmers, along with free provision of loans for second crops like rice and millet. Urgent repairs to irrigation and sewage canals. Unrestricted government purchase of wet and sprouted grains, cotton, and chilli crops. Creation of employment opportunities for 200 days to prevent migration, with a daily wage of Rs 600 for agricultural workers and rural poor and abolition of all student fees in government and private educational institutions.
The resolution emphasises the need for immediate action from both the central and state governments to alleviate the suffering of the affected population and prevent further distress

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