While the farmers have welcomed the north east monsoon, the civic authorities have been finding it tough as the rains have exposed the poor upkeep of the underground drainage system and many lowlying areas were inundated here on Sunday.
Though the actual normal annual rainfall in October was only 34.92 mm against 150.7 mm, November came as a big relief for the farmers as the rainfall already was at 243.76 mm against 184.7 mm, agriculture department officials said and added that the districts annual normal rainfall was 429.mm.
With the rain promising during the next few days, the sowing activities were under way in full swing and completed in many stretches, including Karungulam, Srivaikundam, Alwarthirunagari, Tiruchendur and Sattankulam among other blocks. The water for irrigation for the pisanam crop was released from the dam from Nov 1.
Agriculture department officials told The Hindu that a total of 1.15 lakh hectares was under coverage which include corn, maize, millets, green gram, black gram, groundnut, barnyard millet, paddy, sunflower and among others in the district. Though the farmers would have commenced the activities from October, the deficit rain in that month forced them to keep their fingers crossed.
With heavy rainfall experienced in the last one week, the news came as a double delight for the farmers as they have completed the primary activity. From the department side, Joint Director Mohideen said that they have stocked high quality seeds for the farmers in the respective blocks and hoped that the yield may be higher this season in the district.
The district topped with black gram at 43,500 ha coverage, followed by green gram in 24,000 ha, corn in 30,000 ha, pearl millet 4,500 ha, paddy in 305 ha, cotton in 2,800 ha and oil varieties in 600 hectares respectively. The farmers can approach the respective block level/field officers in the department for any query.