Agartala: A delegation from the All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS) recently held discussions with Tripura Agriculture Director Saradindu Das, advocating for compensation to be provided to over one lakh farmers who faced significant losses as a result of cyclone Midhili.
Representing the delegation, AIKS Secretary Pabitra Kar outlined a comprehensive five-point charter of demands.
Kar highlighted the adverse impact of untimely rains and the cyclone on farmers at all levels in the state, expressing concerns about potential shortages in the markets for agricultural products.
This, in turn, could lead to a crisis affecting both farmers and consumers.
“We have called upon the state agriculture department to stand in support of the farmers during this critical period,” stated Kar.
The five-point demands presented by the AIKS include the prompt formation of a special team by the agriculture department to assess farmers’ losses, immediate financial assistance for affected farmers to facilitate the cultivation of seasonal paddy and vegetables, utilising the disaster management fund for financial aid, providing all necessary agricultural support (seeds, fertilizers, pesticides) free of cost, ensuring free access to all irrigation facilities, and implementing the LI and DWT schemes.
Kar criticised the meteorological department in Agartala for what was deemed an irresponsible bulletin and also held the State Agriculture Department accountable for failing to prevent the extensive damage caused by cyclone Midhili and subsequent rains.
“As paddy harvesting is underway, farmers in the state are grappling with massive losses in agricultural crops due to untimely rains, and vegetable cultivation has been entirely decimated,” Kar pointed out, emphasising the additional challenge posed by a widespread water crisis resulting from a damaged power system across the state.
Kar reported that the agriculture director attentively listened to all the concerns raised and provided assurances of swift and effective action in response to the crisis.