A project report on the proposed Cauvery-Sarabanga link has been drawn up by the Plan Formulation wing of the Public Works Department (PWD) and it was under the consideration of the department, Collector K. Rajamani said here on Thursday.
Disclosing this at the monthly farmers’ grievances meeting, Mr. Rajamani pointed out that implementing the proposal has been an oft-repeated demand of farmers of the district. “Once the design is approved, the detail project report will be prepared and submitted to the government,” he said.
The proposal envisages diversion of surplus flow in the Cauvery from Mettur through a 170-km long canal to Sarabanga, Thirumanimutharu, Ponaniyaru and Ayyaru to benefit farmers in Salem, Namakkal and Tiruchi districts.
Referring to the Cauvery-Gundar river interlinking project, Mr. Rajamani pointed out that the Chief Minister has sought ₹7,000 crore for implementing the project from the Centre.
Stating that about samba paddy is expected to be raised on 1,10 lakh acres in the delta areas of the district, Mr. Rajamani said that he has been informed by the Public Works Department that adequate water has been released in the canals for irrigation following completion of the temporary repairs to the damaged regulator across Kollidam river at Upper Anicut.
Speaking on the issue, Gandhipithan of the Cauvery Delta Farmers Welfare Association, called for steps to expedite the construction of a new regulator across Kollidam and also initiate measures to construct check dams across the Cauvery and Kollidam. Puliyur A. Nagarajan, president, Farmers Wing, Tamil Maanila Congress, said the new regulator should be designed as a barrage to store about 1 tmc of water. He and M. P. Chinnadurai, district president of Tamizhaga Vivasayigal Sangam, demanded a complete ban on mining sand from Cauvery riverbed. N. Veerasekaran of Ayyan Vaical Pasanatharar Sangam called for drawing up a revised water distribution schedule taking into current technical problems in releasing irrigation and branch canals.
Koundampatti R. Subramanian, deputy secretary, Cauvery Delta Farmers Welfare Association, called for steps to check lift irrigation using unauthorised motor pumpsets from the Kattalai High Level Canal and release of at least 180 cusecs at the Nachalur regulator to ensure that the tail-end areas got adequate water.
The Collector also disclosed that 2,025 farmers have been identified in the district for getting production incentive of ₹200 a tonne of sugarcane. “The incentive due to the identified farmers will be credited to their bank accounts within 15 to 30 days,” he said.
He urged farmers to bring practical difficulties, if any, in getting credit from cooperative societies to his notice. Of the crop loan target of ₹317 crore set for cooperative institutions in the district for the current year, ₹77.51 crore has been disbursed to 12,598 farmers so far.
Five direct purchase centres (DPCs) have been opened in Lalgudi taluk to procure paddy cultivated during the kuruvai season and so far 408 tonnes have been procured from farmers. Five more DPCs would function from September 25 at Thinnakulam, Nathamangudi, Sembarai, Komakudi and Sirumayangudi.