Farmers in the national capital are relieved as the Delhi government has announced compensation of Rs 50,000 per hectare for crop damage due to recent unseasonal rains.
Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal told a digital press conference that some farmers had raised grievances about the unseasonal rains and the damage it had done to their crops. “They were worried that due to unseasonal rains, their crops were damaged. I want to tell all my farmer brothers that they needn’t worry. I am with you, the government is with you,” he said. “We are standing with you in every difficulty.”
Kejriwal highlighted that in the last five to seven years since the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has come to power, whenever such a issue has arisen, the government has always come forward to help. “Every time we gave compensation of Rs 50,000 per hectare. This is the highest in the country. Somewhere they give Rs 8,000 and in some other states they give Rs 10,000.”
The chief minister said the Delhi government does not just make announcements, but also makes sure that within three months, the money reaches the accounts of the farmers. “This time too, I have issued orders that farmers who have suffered crop damage will get compensation of Rs 50,000 per hectare. All SDMs and DMs are surveying where all crops have been damaged. The work has begun.”
The India Meteorological Department (IMD) said India recorded 870 mm rainfall, against a long period average (LPA; 1961-2010) of 880 mm. However, IMD data shows that the way this normal was achieved was unprecedented. The monsoon started off at a healthy 110% of normal levels in June, dipped to 93% in July, dipped further to drought levels of 76% in August, then bounced back to a rare 135% of LPA in September.
It has to be pointed out that the incidence of localized extremely heavy rainfall events in July and September, especially on the western coast, were among the highest in the past five years. The abnormally high rain in September could also adversely impact yield for some short duration monsoon crops, experts told us. The paddy harvest in Punjab and Haryana has also been delayed due to untimely showers in late September, the central government said on October 1. Worse, October rain has become so unpredictable in recent years that it is becoming hard to advise farmers on what to do, experts said.