Jagan slams CM on farmers woes; TDP slaps police case against YCRCP chief

Dara Gopi

Amaravati: Perhaps for the first time in two and a half years, a tour of Opposition leader, YSR Congress president Y S Jaganmohan Reddy, has become so controversial that it is raising a political storm.

While Jaganmohan Reddy was at his best in hitting out at Chief Minister N Chandrababu Nadiu for the woes of farmers in the State by neglecting agriculture and taking away their lands in one form or the other, the ruling TDP tried to take advantage of the tour to slap a police case on him for destroying the crop of the party supporters.

Jaganmohan Reddy had toured several villages under Bapulapadu mandal of Krishna district on Monday and interacted with the farmers who have been facing severe drought for the past two years. He had personally visited the barren lands and the damaged black gram fields. The area, which is said to be fertile and highly irrigated, has been lying barren for the past two years, despite having two irrigation canals.

Jaganmohan Reddy, who visited the fields, took Chandrababu Naidu to task blaming him for his anti-farmer policies right from the beginning of his tenure as Chief Minister. He said Chandrababu was spending more time giving publicity to the irrigation projects that were completed during the late Rajasekhar Reddy’s tenure than the actual irrigation projects.

Stating that the Polavaram Left Main Canal was completed for 134 km out of the total 174 km during Rajasekhar Reddy’s period, Jagan alleged the CM had spent a huge amount to complete just a small portion and draw water from Pattiseema. He further alleged that the government had spent several hundreds of crores of rupees on publicity to claim the Polavaram Left Main Canal as his dream and taking credit for linking Godavari and Krishna rivers, while the hundreds and thousands of acres of agriculture lands turned barren pushing farmers and farm labourers to starvation.

TDP leaders’ complaint

A few hours after Jaganmohan Reddy’s visit to the area, the ruling TDP led by local legislator Vallabhaneni Vamsi Mohan, tried to file a case in the local police station against the Leader of Opposition alleging that the visit had led to damage of a standing crop of two farmers.

Led by the TDP leaders, a farmer Jogu Seshagiri Rao from Kakumanu village, lodged a complaint with the Hanuman Junction police against Jaganmohan Reddy and the YSR Congress Gannavaram leader Dutta Ramachandra Rao alleging that they have spoiled his black gram crop by conducting the tour in the fields. He alleged that he had lost his black gram crop as Jaganmohan Reddy had made his supporters walk in his field and demanded that the police make the YSR Congress leaders pay compensation to him.

Legislator Vamsi Mohan alleged that the YSR Congress leader had toured the area with ‘paid supporters’ causing heavy loss to some of the farmers. He cautioned the Opposition leader of severe protest if he continued to play politics with the people using the paid followers.

Blackgram loss to farmers

The farmers who cultivate paddy every year have been cultivating black gram for the past two years due to the prevailing drought conditions. However, this too has failed this year adding to the woes of farmers. The black gram cultivated in over 1.56 lakh hectares in Krishna district failed for the second consecutive year. The farmers spend Rs 2,500 to Rs 3,000 on seeds, around Rs 1,500 on weed removal, Rs 2,000 on fertilisers, Rs 2,500 on pest control and around Rs 2,000 on labour making a total of Rs 11,000 per hectare on an average. However, some farmers spend more than Rs 15,000 per hectare depending on the distance of the field as they need to provide transport for the labour.

If the season and the crop are good, the farmers get around 7 to 8 bags giving them a revenue of Rs 20,000, with a profit margin of Rs 5,000 to Rs 7,000 on an average that goes towards the land and the labour of the farmer. However, due to the prevailing drought during the last two years, the farmers are not getting anything in return while a few are getting less than Rs 5,000 per hectare against an investment of Rs 11,000 to Rs 15,000.

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