Updated: December 3, 2021 8:16:23 am
With cyclonic storm Jawad predicted to hit Odisha this weekend farmers across the state are resorting to an early harvest and distress sale of paddy.
According to the regional meteorological department, the low-pressure area forming in the south Andaman Sea will intensify into a depression and move towards the Odisha coast as a cyclonic storm on December 4. The Odisha government has asked collectors to prepare for evacuation from 13 districts.
Jawad is the third cyclone in odisha this year.
Farmers are preparing to harvest paddy towards mid-December as mandis are slated to open towards the end of the month. “First Yaas, then unseasonal rains in the pre-harvest season and now another cyclonic storm, we have hardly had time to recover from each setback…Paddy is yet to ripen completely but we are forced to harvest it early,” Debendra Rout, a resident of Churmura village in Jaleswar block of Balasore district, said.
In Sohoda village of Bhadrak district which is prone to flooding, farmer Milin Das said, “Back to back crop damage will leave us with heavy debt. The produce this year has been nearly 40 per cent lower than usual.”
In Ganjam and Gajapati districts, farmers have resorted to distress sale of paddy to avoid losses. Shanker Dakwa of Pandiripada village in Ganjam said, “We either let the crops stand and be destroyed or harvest them prematurely.”
For the current year, the government has set the paddy procurement price at Rs 1,940 per quintal. However, farmers are resorting to selling their produce at Rs 900-1000 per quintal, incurring losses.
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