Flood damages crops in 38 dists

Farmers have been facing several jeopardies this year as the cultivation of Aus-Aman has severely been damaged due to prolonged flood in the country.

According to the Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE), 14 types of crop of some 155,000 hectares of land in 38 districts have been affected by the floods so far. Aus and Aman paddy are the worst among the damaged crops.

Farmers said, “Many lands of Aus paddy in the field have been submerged and the seedbeds of Amanhave been destroyed completely. Aman saplings and Auspaddy can’t survive more than three to five days if water level increases excessively.”

According to the Department of Agricultural Extension, the target was to create a seedbed on 290,000 hectares of land for the Aman season. Out of this, some 1 lakh 81 thousand hectares of land were used as Aman seedbeds.

On the other hand, out of the target of 13 lakh 29 thousand hectares of land, about 13 lakh hectares of land has been planted. As a result, the production of these two crops has been hampered badly due to the deluge.

Agricultural experts said that vegetable farmers have also been hit hard by excessive rainfall, flood and ongoing coronavirus pandemic this year. Farmers did not get a good price for the seasonal fruits in this summer. Moreover many farmers lost everything in recent cyclone Amphan. Ongoing flood will be more difficult for them to fight back the situation.

According to DAE sources, the second phase of flood has caused the most damage. In this phase, around 56,362 hectares of Aman paddy land and 8,754 hectares of transplanted Aman paddy have been damaged by the flood.

Besides, Aus paddy of some 35,821 hectares of land has also been damaged. In all, about 1 lakh 938 hectares of land has been damaged of Aus and Aman. At the same time, the seedbed of Aman planted in 9,485 hectares of land has been destroyed.

Apart from Aus and Aman, 26,915 hectares of jute, 11,821 hectares of summer vegetables, 1,497 hectares of maize, 1,814 hectares of sesame and 1,755 hectares of sugarcane were damaged in the second phase of the flood.

Earlier, in the first phase from June 25 to July 9, floods in Rangpur, Gaibandha, Kurigram, Lalmonirhat, Bogra, Sirajganj, Sylhet, Sunamganj, Jamalpur, Netrokona, Rajshahi, Manikganj, Faridpur and Tangail districts have damaged about 76,210 hectares land of 11 crops.

Of this, 41,918 hectares of land has been completely damaged. There was a loss of about 349 crore taka this year. The total number of affected farmers is 3 lakh 44 thousand.

However, the Ministry of Agriculture said that in the second phase, the amount of flood damage in 38 districts is yet to be calculated. However, the amount of damage will be increased.

According to the DAE, various initiatives have been taken to overcome the damage caused by the floods. Aman saplings will be distributed free of cost among the affected marginal and small farmers.

If it is not possible to cultivate Aman in flood-affected areas, then about 50,000 farmers will be given Maskalai seeds and fertilizers worth around Tk 3.82 crore.

In addition, in areas where the floods will be prolonged, seeds will be provided to the farmers according to the needs of the farmers.

Meanwhile, the Agriculture Minister AbdurRazzak instructed the agriculture officials to monitor the field situation in the flood-hit areas on Tuesday.

He further said the flood-hit farmers are in extreme uncertainty. We will try our level best to meet the losses of the farmers once the flood water is decreased, he added.

However, the National Disaster Response Coordination Centre on Thursday reported that some 5.5 million people or nearly a million families were affected by the flood so far.

The Health Emergency Control Room has recorded at least 145 deaths, mostly from drowning or snakebites in flood-hit areas.

Water level of many rivers has increased abnormally. Thousands of people were marooned. Many lost their houses due to river erosion and flood. A large number of people are in dire straits amidst the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and flood.