Maharashtra Congress Demands Package for Farmers Hit by Untimely Rains

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Maharashtra Congress Demands Package for Farmers Hit by Untimely Rains

A damaged wheat crop after rainfall in Karad, Maharashtra. (Press Trust of India)

Mumbai: 

With unseasonal rains causing damage to crops in several districts of Maharashtra, the Congress today demanded a comprehensive package for the affected farmers even as Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said he has asked for an assessment of the damages.

Mumbai and some other parts of Maharashtra yesterday experienced unseasonal rains which brought down temperatures, but posed threat to agriculture crops.

"The unforeseen rains have damaged most of the standing crops in the state. The damage is quite severe, specially in the Konkan region. Also, most of the crops at Khandesh in western Maharashtra have been damaged considerably. Most of the horticulture crops in Nashik district are also under stress," Leader of Opposition in state Assembly Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil told PTI.

He also demanded a comprehensive weather-based crop insurance scheme for the farmers.

"The government needs to work out a mechanism to overcome this problem of global warming and climate change. The government should take up the weather-based crop insurance scheme seriously. This has to be looked into differently now as the parameters which have been considered in the weather based insurance scheme are not addressing the concerns of today's problem of global warming," he said.

Considering that suicides by farmers from Vidarbha region continue despite a financial package being announced for them, Mr Patil said that not much can be expected from the BJP-led government.

"The Met department has predicted more rains in the coming days. The extent of the damage will be measured in totality only after the rains stop. But the government needs to work out a comprehensive package for farmers. The loans and electricity bills of farmers who had grown these crops should be completely waived. This will help the debt-ridden farmers to a certain extent," he said.

Mr Patil also said that he will visit some of the districts where crops have borne the brunt of untimely rains, to get first hand information about the extent of damage.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Fadnavis conceded that the crop situation after the unseasonal rainfall is grim and said that he has sought for an assessment of the damages caused by it. He tweeted,

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