Ahead Of Central Team’s Visit, Odisha Announces Post-Cyclone Package

Bhubaneswar: A day before the arrival of the central team in Odisha to assess the damage caused by the very severe cyclonic storm Titli in the southern districts on October 11, the state government on Wednesday announced a comprehensive package for the cyclone-affected people.

“The central team, led by AK Sahi will arrive in Bhubaneswar in the morning. Later in the day, the team will proceed to Ganjam and Gajapati districts in two groups. The team after its field visit will have a meeting with senior officials at the State Secretariat on November 2,” Joint Relief Commissioner (JRC) Pravat Mohapatra told mediapersons here on Wednesday.

Briefing mediapersons after a high-level meeting presided over by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik at the State Secretariat here in the afternoon, chief secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi said that the agriculture input subsidy of Rs 6,800 per acre will be provided to the small and marginal farmers, who sustained crop loss of 33 per cent or more in the rainfed/non-irrigated areas, Rs 13,500- per hectare of land in areas under assured irrigation, and Rs 18,000 per hectare for all types of perennial crops. Perennial crops will include mango, cashew, coconut, kewra and betel vine. The assistance shall be provided to the actual cultivators.

Agricultural input subsidy to any affected farmer shall not be less than Rs 2,000 for perennial crops and Rs 1,000 for other crops. Besides, 1.2 lakh pulses, 30,000 oilseed mini kits and 50,000 vegetable seed kits shall be supplied to the Titili-affected farmers during Rabi 2018-19 while 20,000 hectares of demonstration programmes of different crops will be taken up in the cyclone-affected districts in the ensuing season, Padhi said.

He further said that 20,000 hectares of plantation crops (cashew, mango, coconut, kewra, sericulture plantations etc) affected by the cyclone will be rejuvenated along with support for the inter-cropping package for three years to provide income support in the initial period to the farmers, while the plantations become fruit-bearing.

Along with this, special assistance of Rs 20,000 per hectare will be provided to the affected area of 2,000 hectares under sugarcane for a demonstration on sustainable sugarcane initiative or Ratoon Crop Management at the rate of Rs 12,500 based on the farmer’s requirement.

The chief secretary also said that an incentive of Rs 7,000 per unit will be provided to 2,000 farmers for cultivating Root and Tuber crops while an incentive of Rs 10,000 per unit will be provided for repair and renovation of shed net and thatched structure for the restoration of mushroom units to 500 farmers.

The state government will also provide 1000 pump sets with 50 per cent subsidy limited to a maximum of Rs 15,000, 1000 solar pump sets (0.5 HP) at 90 per cent subsidy limited to Rs 54,000 per pump set under Saura Jalanidhi and 5000 sprayers at a subsidy of 50 per cent limited to maximum of Rs 3,800 for battery-operated sprayers and Rs 600 for hand-operated sprayers to the affected farmers.

For pulses and oilseeds crops, the state government has decided to train 75,000 affected farmers by conducting 750 camps to adopt seed treatment with a free supply of chemicals to cover 75,000 acres for increasing production in Rabi crops.

Fruit saplings like five mango grafts and four coconut seedlings will be distributed to each of the 50,000 affected families of the farmers to sustain livelihoods.

Immediate steps will be taken to arrange and distribute quality seeds in sufficient quantity for alternate cropping during Rabi season.

The Odisha Lift Irrigation Corporation (OLIC) shall take immediate steps to repair the lift irrigation points in all the affected villages on priority. Steps shall be taken to operate all LI points during Rabi season. The Energy department shall energise the LI Points immediately.

Talking about the farm credit, Padhi said the short-term kharif loans advanced in the affected areas during Kharif 2018 having crop loss of 33 per cent and above shall be converted into medium-term (conversion) loan. The due date of Kharif short-term loan advanced in the affected areas shall be extended up to September 30, 2019, to facilitate the conversion of such loans into medium-term (conversion) loans. Expeditious steps will be taken to organise joint liability groups (JLGs) by covering a maximum number of share croppers/oral lessees to provide them credit during the current Rabi season. Steps will be taken to conduct crop cutting experiments to settle the claims of the affected insured farmers under Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) with risks of localized calamity and mid-season adversity.

The chief secretary also said that a compensation of Rs 30,000 shall be provided towards loss of each milch cow and buffalo (up to three animals), Rs 25,000 for each draught animal (up to three animals), Rs 16,000 for each calf (up to six animals), Rs 3,000 for each goat (up to 30 animals) and Rs 50 for each bird (maximum Rs 5,000).

The state government will provide Rs 1.13 lakh to 10,000 farmers for the restoration of cow sheds while 10,000 farmers will be supported for construction of goat shed at the rate of Rs 44,000 per shed. The affected farmer will get assistance for only one animal shed, either for cow shed or goat shed.

Besides, 75 per cent subsidy will be given to 1000 farmers to assist them with 10 goats and 1 duck at a unit cost of Rs 66,000 while for nourishing milch cattle to overcome the stress, 5000 farmers will be supported with 500 kgs of cattle feed in the affected areas. About 350 dairy cows will be provided to farmers, who have lost livestock, for restoring their livelihoods. This apart, 20,000 farmers in the affected areas will be provided with 50 chicks of 4-weeks-old and Rs 500 towards night shelter, he pointed out.

In the fisheries sector, input assistance up to 75 per cent (Rs 1. 25 lakh per hectare) will be provided to the affected fish farmers whose tanks/ponds have been damaged with loss of fish and fish seeds while financial assistance of Rs 22,500 per boat and Rs 15,000 per net will be provided for fully and partially damaged boats and nets. Besides, financial assistance of Rs 60,000 per boat and Rs 15,000 per net will be provided for fully and partially damaged boats and nets of marine and Chilika fishermen.

In the sericulture sector, the farmers shall be given input subsidy Rs 4,800 per hectare for Eri, Mulberry and Tussar. About 125 affected sericulture farmers will be supported Rs 1.75 lakh for completed damaged rearing house and Rs 0.57 lakh for partially damaged rearing house.

Under Handicrafts/Handloom sector, financial assistance of Rs 4,100 per artisan for replacement of tools/equipment and Rs 4,100 per artisan for loss of raw material/goods in process/finished goods shall be provided.

The chief secretary further said that in order to intensify the interventions, 200 producers’ groups will be promoted covering 30,000 farmers. Each producer group will be supported with Rs 3 lakh towards establishment and institution development. Additional seed money of Rs 5000 will be given to the affected women SHGs in the affected areas who have taken up cultivation and sustained crop loss.

The state government has also decided to give 100 per cent remission in respect of cess on land revenue and compulsory basic water rate to the farmers where the crop loss is 33 percent or more.

The state government has decided to waive school fees and school examination fees up to High School level in government schools and provide two pairs of school uniforms and textbooks to the children up to the elementary school level, Padhi added.

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