While Punjab government has announced ‘girdawari’ (physical survey) to assess crop damage, farmers in affected areas are now demanding compensation for losses suffered due to damage to their farm implements and machinery.
Out of affected 187 villages in Jalandhar and Kapurthala, around 100 villages — including 39 of Kapurthala — are such where the flood water entered people’s houses.
“My tractor-trolley was under 10 feet water for the first four days of the floods and still it is lying in 5-6 feet deep water. I won’t be functional even after waters recede,” said farmer Avtar Singh Of Gidderpinidi village close to Sutlej river bridge.
Gurjinder Singh of Mandala Chhanna village, which is close to Dhussi Bandh, said that all the farm implements, which are required quite frequently in the fields including tillers, harrows, various types of cutters, diggers, plough, disk harrows of entire village got washed away as I am a small farmer with five acres land.
“In 2008 floods, all my farm equipment had washed away and I was forced to sell my tractor as a scrap as it got damaged beyond repair,” said another farmer Kultar Singh of Kanga Khurad Village, adding that this time too a trolley which was around Rs two lakh got submerged. He was not compensated back then for the loss of farm machinery.
“My father had come to evacuate us in his tractor trolley and big truck, but both got stuck in water and are lying there since, said Manjit Kaur of Kothhe village, adding that around Rs10 lakh machinery is stuck in flood waters.
“Mostly, we take our machinery out of our villages when the flood alert comes but this time it was so sudden that most of the farmers could not save their trolleys and small implements in our village,” said Kulwinder Singh of Kanga Khurd, adding that even the other vehicles like cars and jeeps got submerged under the water and farmers need to spend huge amount on them to get them repaired.
“Government should also take care of such damages along with crop damage,” said farmer Darshan singh of Gidderpinidi.