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Rice production in Assam set to go down as floods wreak havoc
With two spell of floods hitting Assam back to back, the production of rice will go down this year than the expectation. Assam agriculture minister Atul Bora said that the loss could be to the tune of 6 lakh metric tonnes.
“The target for rice production this year was 62 lakh metric tonnes, but as the floods have severely hit the Sali paddy, the state is likely to suffer a loss of around 6 lakh metric tonnes,” Bora told reporters addressing a press conference on Monday.
In 2015-16, rice production of Assam was 53 lakh metric tonnes.
More than 1.73 lakh hectares of Sali paddy have been destroyed in the flood, besides vegetables in 10,692 hectares and jute in over 7,000 hectares. A total of 3.08 lakh hectares of crop land have been affected so far in the floods and 5,055 hectres of agriculture land with paddy saplings were also damaged.
“Around 6.29 lakh farmer families in 4,717 villages have been hit in the flood this year so far. Besides, we have included 45,000 farmers under crop insurance. The department has also decided to distribute around 1 lakh shallow tube well,” added Bora.
Bora said that more than 6000 hectors agriculture lands have been affected by severe siltation in Dhemaji, Lakhimpur, Jorhat, Darrang, Golaghat, Majuli and Barpeta districts.
The department will distribute the seeds among the farmers to overcome the loss in the flood. “Farmers cultivating sali paddy are unlikely to make any gains this year. So we are laying stress on the rabi crops. We are giving more thrust on crops like mustard, potato, onion and pumpkin gourd among others,” said Bora.
Bora has asked all the districts officers to compile the losses of the farmers in flood for further compensation works.
“The government will pay compensation through direct benefit transfer system to the farmers and the money will be deposited in the accounts of the farmers,” he said.