Promising to make Telangana a seed bowl of the nation and to provide remunerative prices to the farmers produce, besides giving farmers a loan of Rs 2 lakh equivalent to 75 per cent of stocks they stored, Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao today asserted that for past 54 years there was no increase in storage capacity of only 176 godowns with four lakh tons. Now the TRS Government is going to build 330 Godowns, one each in a mandal headquarters, to store 17 lakh tons by next March to cater to the needs of farm produce.
During his reply to the two-day discussion in the State Assembly on farmers’ suicides and farm issues, KCR appealed to the farmers not to end their lives as the government is with them to provide all help. Disclosing that 364 seed companies have agreed to adopt the villages to supply quality seeds to the farmers, he warned that serious action will be taken if fake or low quality seeds are supplied. He further claimed that the TRS Government has set a record of sorts at national level by collecting 99 per cent of cotton produced, by procuring 1.84 metric tons of cotton through 84 CCI centers set up, while during 2009-14 the congress regime collected only 1.38 metric tons cotton. He also took exception to the Congress government for resorting to lathi charge on farmers for seeking seeds and pesticides.
Taking a dig at the previous governments for failure to supply seeds and fertilizers, compelling the farmers to line up in queues and put their chappals sometimes. Such a pathetic condition is not prevailing as the government supplied the stocks and asked the officials to keep ready adequate stocks, he maintained. He ridiculed that leaders used to bring lanterns and dry grass into the Assembly sittings during previous governments that reflect their failure to supply power, seeds and fertilizers. Though the problem is impending, they need to come up with a comprehensive plan of action to curtail the problem in coordination with all other parties, he remarked.
Long term plan to check suicides
Favouring an all-party delegation to the Centre to press for a change in policy to consider each farmer as a unit instead of village for drought estimations and adequate relief and succor to relieve farmers in distress, Chandrasekhar Rao said that they will go in for a scientific approach of long term objective to protect the interests of the farmers. He said that the suicides problem is prevailing in entire country and ‘we will together sort out the issue through a plan of action’. Trying to allay fears of the farmers, he said that they have taken a decision to waive off all crop loans from June 2, last year and there is need for collective efforts to route out the main cause of the issue. Agriculture University sans research and staff so far, and the TRS government is extra cautious to bridge the gap to ensure that scientific methods of farm practices reached the farmers, through timely suggestions from experts and extension offices. ‘We will fill up posts and take remedial measures’. Stating that the government cannot resolve the six decades long pending problems overnight, he said that in three and half years they will spend a total of RS 75,000 crore –every year Rs 25,000– to complete Palamur lift, Dindi, Kalwakurty and 25 ongoing irrigation projects.
‘Together we will come up with a solution to address the needs of irrigation and agriculture’ he said and charged that the earlier rulers looted and deprived our region of all resources for many decades. He also said that they will urge the Centre with details of about 200 drought hit mandals.
Telangana Land Tenancy Act which is powerful in India, that offers five years of ownership, will be implemented with strict measures, he said adding that they will focus on land tenants problem. Though opposition parties dubbed Mission Kakatiya as ‘Commission Kakatya’ though the scheme is yet to begin, he said that Megasaysay awardee Rajendra Singh gave a pat to Telangana government for taking up lakes restoration successfully. The State will take up the issue with the Centre through an all party delegation for drought hit succor, he said. ‘We will focus on agriculture research in universities with adequate funds, staff and appoint extension and other officials to give suggestions to the farmers on crops’ he said.(NSS)