Vijayawada: Rainfall under the influence of southwest monsoon in the last few days is helping farmers take up sowing of various crops in a brisk manner during the present kharif season in Andhra Pradesh.
AP received average rainfall of 180.6mm against the normal 154.2mm, it going up by 17.1 per cent from June 1 to July 14. Districts like Anantapur, Chittoor and Kadapa received excess rainfall of 60 per cent while Kurnool got it in excess by 20 per cent to 59 per cent.
Srikakulam, Vizianagaram, Visakhapatnam, East Godavari, West Godavari, Krishna, Guntur and Prakasam reported normal rainfall and Nellore reported deficit rainfall.
The state government had aimed at raising crops on 38.13 lakh hectares against the normal area of 37.35 lakh hectares for the kharif season. So far, the total area sown was at 5.66 lakh hectares, with a 15 per cent coverage.
Major crops like paddy were sown on 2.34 lakh hectares against the targeted area of 15.99 lakh hectares. With regard to total food grains, out of the targeted area of 21.73 lakh hectares, sowing was done on 2.91 lakh hectares for cultivation of several varieties of crops.
Meanwhile, the agriculture authorities maintain that, based on preliminary reports, paddy nurseries as also standing crops and other crops were inundated in parts of the Godavari districts. The river is swollen following heavy inflow of water due to rainfall in its catchment areas.
Farmers had raised paddy and other crops in island villages along the river, they were also inundated. Ground crop also suffered inundation in some parts of Kurnool district.
Agriculture and horticulture authorities have called for preliminary reports on the extent of inundation of crops due to the rainfall and also due to overflowing of canals, drains and tanks, to assess the extent of crop damage or loss from all the districts.
Farmers depending on water from Srisailam and Nagarjuna Sagar projects for cultivation of crops located in their command areas in parts of Rayalaseema region including Kurnool and coastal districts like Krishna, Guntur and Prakasam have not taken up sowing on a large area in the absence of release of water through canals so far.
This was because the Telangana government drew huge quantities of water from these two reservoirs as also from the Pulichinthala project in the last few days, for generation of power.
The state government had aimed at raising horticulture crops on 17.48 lakh hectares for the kharif season and the department says crops like vegetables and banana were inundated in parts of Godavari districts.
They maintain that, if such crops are inundated in flood waters for two to three days, they would perish.
AP farmers federation president Nagendra Nath said, “The rainfall is beneficial to farmers for taking up cultivation of crops.”
An agriculture official said, “The rainfall is more useful to farmers for raising crops in a brisk manner. We have called for reports from districts on inundation of crops. Once the water recedes, we will come to know about the extent of damage or loss to crops.”...