Friday, July 24, 2009

Monsoon shutters dreams of Coffee growers

Madikeri, Karnataka, July 24 : Dreams of Coffee planters were shuttered as fruits have dropped due to heavy rainfall that lashed the District since onset of South West Monsoon.

The delayed monsoon created high hope in the planters as the fruits took a fast growth and grew in size. The jingling branches projected bounty. As the fate would have it, the heavy rainfall has turned the fruits down on to land. While the present fall is due to the lashing effect, the expert says that there will be further fall due to the weakening of fruit base or decaying.

The growers from Birunai in South Kodagu alleged that the government had promised to provide insurance coveraga for crop loss during last season and never kept up its promise. They explain the irony that for a naked eye the coffee berry looks thick and healthy.

But they keep falling before ripening.

Ajjamada Shankaru Nachappa, secretary of the Srimangala Coffee Growers Association told UNI that similar situation was experienced in 2007 and the government had promised to pay compensation. It was a blatant lie and they never received any assistance. He said that the government had announced a compensation of Rs 6000 per hectare during 2007.

"Hundreds of applications were forwarded. The coffee board conducted a survey and the then deputy commissioner Niranjan suggested alteration in the RTC and hundreds of rupees was spent on rectifying records with a hope of getting compensation. The planters regretfully state that they never received a single pie so far," he added.

Birunani receives highest rainfall. It had received 288.77 inches during 2008. It has received nearly 80 inches of rainfall during this month. The planters told that orange and Pepper crops are also suffering due to heavy rainfall. The planters are suffering with multifold problems. The weather plays a spoil sports. There is labor problem and they have to pa double to those who are available. There is crop loss. Added to the agony is the crocodile tears from the politicians and non cooperation from officers and government.

They have appealed to the government and peoples representatives to look into the problems of the planters with sincerity and provide assistance.

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