Mangaluru, Oct 27, 2019: This morning October 27, Sunday, saw the sun peeping out and bringing smiles which were enhanced by the festival of Deepavali. Reports that cyclone Kyarr had taken a course towards the Arabian sub-continent was good news to people who were traumatised by the pounding rain in the last few days - nothing is permanent they say - so be it.
Incessant pounding rains and salt water intrusions have destroyed hundreds of acres of paddy fields along the coast. The growth of sprout has been affected due to salinity in the water.
The rains have ruined the prospect of growing vegetables in areas, located close to River Shambhavi, in the region.
The intrusion of saline water into the paddy fields has left farmers in tears.
The paddy crop in some areas was, however, harvested and farmers were preparing their fields to grow vegetables; Sea erosion has intensified along Padubidri beach. Waves have washed away coconut trees in Padukere, a resident of Padukere, has been residing in fear as gigantic waves have been lashing on the walls of her house. A tree fell and damaged the house of one in Kadekar in Udupi taluk.
When informed about the salt water intrusion into paddy fields, Hejamadi Gram Panchayat President Vishalakshi Putran, Vice president Sudhakar Karkera, Kaup Tahsildar Mohammed Isaac and Revenue Inspector Ravishankar visited the spot to assess the loss.
A house was also damaged after a tree fell in Bada village in Kaup taluk. A house in Padu village, was also damaged. Gusty winds damaged the house of one Udaya Acharya in Kurkalu village in Kaup.Many boats that had ventured into sea from Malpe harbour have sought shelter at Karwar harbour in Uttara Kannada district.
The district has received an average of 74.90 mm rainfall. Udupi taluk has received— 78.7 mm rain, Karkala—64.4 mm rain and Kundapura—79.8 mm rain in the past 24 hours.
Paddy harvest in DK, Udupi faces disaster :
Paddy farmers in Dakshina Kannada and Udupi are at wits end and worried as the intermittent rain that has been lashing the districts for the past few days is likely to damage the standing crops as well as affect the harvesting process.
The paddy is cultivated on 15,900 hectares in DK while in Udupi it is cultivated on 36,000 hectares.
Paddy growers in undivided Dakshina Kannada normally harvest the Kharif crop in October and November. This year, the sowing and harvesting processes have been delayed due to a delayed monsoon.
A paddy farmer is reported to have stated that, if the rain continues, then there is a danger of the standing crop being destroyed. “I will see to take a decision on harvesting the crop,” he said. Some farmers had already harvested the crop and had spread it on the field for drying. “Such farmers have been forced to shift the crop from the courtyard in order to protect it from rain,” he added.
Another farmer from Udupi, said, “Usually, Deepavali is celebrated by offering puja to the harvested paddy crop. This year, I could not take up harvesting due to the intermittent rain in the region. Further, delayed sowing has affected the harvest in many parts of the district.”
The crop is ready for harvest by farmers who had transplanted the paddy seedlings in June-July in spite of delay in arrival of monsoon. The rain is likely to affect the corn of the paddy, which is ready for harvest. The gusty wind makes the paddy saplings fall on the ground and rot, farmers said.
Harvester machines: Heavy rain last week washed away about 40 acres of paddy at Bairampalli in Udupi taluk. Adding to the woes of farmers, the harvester machines had to be brought in from Davangere and Tamil Nadu to take up harvesting at Saibrakatte, Santhekatte, Barkur, Koteshwara and Kundapur in Udupi district. The machines, however, are yet to be of any use.
Operators who have come with their harvester machines from Tamil Nadu, said, “It’s four days we are here, owing to the rain, the farmers are not contacting us for harvesting the standing crop. The machines too cannot be moved around in the fields. We are hopeful of earning some income after the rain recedes in the region.”