Enhance compensation to paddy farmers: UDF

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Thiruvananthapuram, Mar 26 (UNI) Pointing out that the compensation announced by the Kerala government to farmers was meagre, the Opposition United Democratic Front (UDF) today demanded compensation per acre instead of each hectare.

Talking to reporters after the UDF meeting here, its convener P P Thankachan said the compensation announced by the government was insufficient to meet the immediate requirements of the farmers.

The government should provide Rs 10,000 per acre instead of each hectare to the farmers who suffered paddy crop loss in summer rain havoc, he said.

Alleging the government had totally failed to convince the Centre about the paddy loss in the unexpected summer rainfall in which thousands of acres paddy, which was almost ready for harvesting, came under water, he said the Chief Minister himself should call on the Prime Minister and Union Ministers concerned to apprise them of the loss and to get sufficient Central assistance.

Moreover, the government failed to take a stock of the paddy loss incurred in the rainfall, he claimed.

Mr Thankachan also demanded the government to provide adequate compensation to other cash crops, cashew, pepper and vegetables, according to the nature of damage.

The UDF Convener also urged the government to take steps to bring harvesting machines from neighbouring Tamil Nadu and provide security to the staff manning them in Kuttanad as some political organisations were against the introduction of machines in harvesting paddy.

On Chengra issue, he said the government should conduct a survey and seize the surplus land, if any, which should be provided to the landless tribals and other people.

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