Dairy farm workers call off protest in Manapparai


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Dairy farm workers call off protest in Manapparai
Milk collection and supply, which remained crippled due to workers strike since Wednesday in Manapparai, resumed on Thursday afternoon following assurance by officials that the workers’ demand for wage hike will be placed before higher-ups for prompt action. Manapparai and neighbouring villages account for about 4,805 dairy farmers with a daily production of an average of 14,000 litres. A total of 57 workers collect milk from the producers and distribute it to the members of the public. While the daily sale in the local market is an average 9,000 litres, the balance 5,000 litres is sent to the chilling plant. The workers have been demanding better wage complaining that their present monthly wage ranged between Rs.3, 200 and Rs.4, 500 depending on seniority. They went on indefinite strike on Wednesday afternoon, pointing out that the wages fixed 13 years ago in 2000 was not hiked despite repeated plea with the government. Talks were held with the officials in the presence of Muthukrishnan, Deputy Registrar of Cooperatives, and Chandrasekaran, MLA. The officials pointed out being a policy matter, any decision on enhancing their wage could be taken only by the State government. However, they assured the workers to place the matter before the higher authorities for prompt action. Following the assurance, the distributors called off their strike and resumed milk supply in the evening.
Workers call off protest following assurance of prompt action by officials
Foot‐and‐mouth disease: farmers seek compensation
Farmers under the banner of the Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha (KRRS) formed a human chain on the Bangalore-Mysore Highway on Thursday to urge the State government to release compensation for those who lost their cattle owing to foot-and-mouth disease. It was held near Sri Nalwadi Krishnaraja Wadiyar Circle. The protesters accused the Animal Husbandry Department of not taking steps to save cattle. KRRS leader Shambhuna Halli Suresh sought Rs. 50,000 as compensation for the loss of each head of cattle. The farmers requested the department to set up dispensaries and supply medicines to veterinary clinics across the State.
Cane price They also urged the government to fix the procurement price for sugarcane at Rs. 3,500 a tonne for the present crushing season. The traffic on the busy highway was disrupted for a while following the protest. Among those leaders present on the occasion were H. Nagaraju and Marilinge Gowda.

Arecanut prices skyrocket, but farmers are unhappy
Mismatch between supply and demand has led to price rise The decline in arecanut yield in the district owing to climatic changes and disease has triggered a sharp increase in its price. The price of saraku variety of arecanut was around Rs. 18,000 per quintal last September and has doubled to Rs. 36,000 per quintal today. Similarly, the price of bette, rashi idi and api varieties have also increased by around 70 per cent during the same period. The Union government’s announcement of increasing the minimum import price of arecanut from Rs. 75 to Rs. 110 a kg in the second week of May triggered the northward climb in prices. There was a 20 to 30 per cent increase in prices in a span of 15 days. Arecanut growers had thought the State government’s May 31 ban on gutka would result in a slump in arecanut prices. However, the price of api and rashi idi varieties that was around Rs. 18,000 per quintal prior to the ban went up to Rs. 21,000 by the first week of August. The arecanut yield had declined by around 30 per cent in the district last year owing to poor rainfall. Farmers sold last year’s produce by the end of June. The arecanut harvested this year will enter the market from November second week. With an acute mismatch between supply and actual demand in the past three months, prices have increased sharply. D.B. Shankarappa, president of Shimoga Arecanut Growers’ Association, told The Hindu that the price of arecanut is expected to escalate further. Owing to heavy rain that lashed the district this year, arecanut trees have been infected with fruit rot disease (koleroga). So, the arecanut production in the district is likely to drop. As the gap between demand and supply widens in the coming months, there will be a further increase in price, he said. The news of price rise has not brought cheer to the farmers of Hosanagar, Sagar, Tirthahalli and Koppa taluks, who sell their produce in the Shimoga market. They have suffered heavy losses due to koleroga. Naveen Kumar, an arecanut grower from Golikoppa village in Koppa taluk, said he was not expecting much benefit from the increase in prices. “More than 50 per cent of the produce in my five-acre plantation was damaged. Though the arecanut price has escalated, farmers in Malnad region where koleroga has caused extensive damage will not benefit much,” he said. Only the farmers in Shimoga and Bhadravati taluks, where the loss due to koleroga was comparatively less, are expecting some benefit from the price rise.

No change in paddy seed sale price
The State government has kept the sale rate of different varieties of paddy seeds unchanged at Rs. 1,350 per quintal for Rabi crops. As per State Seeds Pricing Committee meeting, the cost of per quintal paddy seed was estimated at Rs. 2,424 after taking procurement price, transportation and other costs into account. “The Centre gives subsidy of Rs. 500 per quintal in 15 districts covered under the National Food Security Mission programme. The balance requirement would be met through the State plan to maintain the sale rate at Rs. 1,350 per quintal at the same level of kharif season,” Agriculture Department sources said. About 68,560 quintals of certified paddy seeds will be distributed during Rabi 2013-14 and entire quantity of seeds will be available within the State. Odisha State Seed Corporation (OSSC) would arrange 68,051 quintals while rest of the quantity will be made available by departmental farms. The committee has fixed the sale rate of groundnut seeds at Rs. 4,000 per quintal even though per quintal procurement price including transportation cost of groundnut seed was estimated at Rs. 6,353. Farmers will get both the State and the Central government subsidy to the tune of Rs. 2,353. During Rabi 2013-14, about 1.38 lakh quintals of groundnut seeds will be distributed to the farmers. However, the expected groundnut seeds production inside the State is about 41,000 quintal including the OSSC production. The committee instructed the OSSC to arrange groundnut seeds of 80,000 quintals from outside after making reassessment of the seed requirement. Last year, unavailability of groundnut seeds had caused widespread resentment in different parts of the State. Farmers had no option, but to depend on substandard groundnut in the open market. The pricing committee has also fixed sale rate of wheat, gram, field pea, mustard, moong dal and til. The Agriculture Department has been asked to prepare seed rolling plan or long term perspective seed plan mentioning the varieties and quantities to be produced to meet entire seeds requirement of the State. The cost of per quintal paddy seed is estimated at Rs. 2,424
Banned pesticides found in vegetables
The samples, collected from the State during Onam, were analysed for organochloro pesticides

The accumulation of chlorinated pesticides in the human body can lead to serioushealth hazards.— File Photo Traces of pesticides banned from agriculture have been found in vegetable samples collected from the State during Onam. Traces of Benzene hexachloride, Dieldrin and Heptachlor were found in 15 samples of vegetables that were analysed by the Council for Food Research and Development, Konni. Though the traces of the chemicals were “within the permissible limit and one sample above the permissible limit”, the study indicated that the pesticides not intended for agriculture had reached the vegetables, said M.K. Mukundan, director of the council. The vegetable samples, collected from different parts of the State during Onam, were analysed for organochloro pesticides. The council analysed 43 vegetable samples in 20 categories. Of the 43 samples, 28 were found free of organochloro compounds. Carrot samples collected from Kozhikode had the banned pesticides beyond the permissible levels and the samples were classified as not satisfactory for human consumption, according to a report prepared by A. Bhadran, senior analyst of the council. Plantains, beans, cabbage, chillies, tomato, bitter gourd, ladies finger, brinjal and cluster beans were among the vegetables that were assessed for pesticides. According to Mr. Mukundan, there existed the possibility of farmers directly applying chlorinated pesticides or plants absorbing those compounds from the soil. The accumulation of chlorinated pesticides in the human body can lead to serious health hazards. The human body cannot disintegrate or excrete chlorinated pesticides. Is accumulation beyond a particular level would have disastrous health effects, said Mr. Mukundan.
Magic diet for vegetable crops
Precision farming yields rich dividends for farmers
Eating large meals three times a day is a health risk. Doctors advise eating small, nutritious portions in short intervals. As with humans, so with plants. The vegetable farmers in the Ozhalapathy grama panchayat limits in Chittur taluk follow a diet plan — precision farming — for their plants. They are a happy lot because of the good profit they make when farming in general is considered a losing vocation. Mohan Raj, who grows tomato, chilli, brinjal, okra and banana on an acre (0.4 hectare) of land, is a practitioner of this farm practice. He made a profit of Rs.2 lakh from an investment of Rs.70,000, of which Rs.39,434 is subsidy. He produced 55 tonnes of tomato in one season and sold it at Rs. 5 a kg. Chilli went for Rs. 20 a kg.

He says 70 farmers of Ozhalapathy took up precision farming on one acre of land each. All of them made good profits in the past two years.
Profits High profits between Rs.75,000 and Rs.2 lakh an acre a year has made more farmers switch over to high-tech precision farming. Now 1,778 farmers in Chittur have taken it up on 980 acres and received a financial assistance of Rs.2.5 crore, 50-90 per cent of it government subsidy. The high-tech precision farming started in the district four years ago is getting popular as more and more farmers from different parts of the State have shown interest in it because of its high productivity and profit, K. Krishnankutty, a pioneer of precision farming in Palakkad, says. He says 2,000 farmers have together submitted a scheme for Rs. 4 crore to the government for financial assistance to take up precision farming in Chittur. Precision farming’s advantages are increased yield, early maturity, savings on water, fertilizer, energy and labour, reduced weed growth and easy management of pests. Mechanisation makes the work easy, and even young farmers are attracted to it as a “whitecollar farming method.”
The difference Mr. Krishnankutty says that when tomato was cultivated in the usual way, the yield was 9,808 kg an acre. But with drip water of precision farming, the yield rose by 155.5 per cent to 25,050 kg with 47 per cent saving on water. In the case of capsicum, the yield was 5,430 kg against 8,990 kg, a 66.6 per cent increase, with 43.1 per cent saving on water. For brinjal, the figures were 5,044 kg against 8,569 kg, an increase of 69.9 per cent, and 40 per cent water saving. For beans, 2,255 kg against 4,100 kg, 81.8 per cent increase, and 36.9 per cent water saving, Mr. Krishnankutty said.
Pesticide residues found in vegetables
Second lab report of College of Agriculture, Vellayani A topping of grated carrot and freshly chopped coriander or mint leaves on your favourite dish looks great and adds to the smell and taste, but it could also spell trouble. The vegetables used for garnishing may be loaded with toxic pesticides, unless they are home-grown. The second report of the Pesticide Residue Research and Analytical Laboratory at the College of Agriculture, Vellayani, has revealed dangerous levels of pesticide residue in 14 vegetables used by most households. While seven vegetables were found to be low in pesticide content, 38 were listed as safe-to-eat. The laboratory carried out tests on 260 samples of 59 vegetables collected from retail shops, supermarkets and markets in Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Alappuzha and Kasaragod during the period from April 1 to June 30 this year. Mint leaf, carrot, curry leaf, green chilly, coriander leaf, green capsicum, cucumber, celery, ladies finger, amaranthus (red and green), eggplant, radish and drum stick were found to be the most contaminated (exceeding the maximum residue limit set by the Food Safety and Standard Authority of India), while tomato, yellow capsicum, red capsicum, ginger, cabbage (violet), cauliflower and long beans were found to have less of pesticide residue. The samples contained residues of several pesticides including Profenophos, a neurotoxic pesticide banned in Kerala and restricted to tea and cotton in other States.

Interestingly, ivy gourd (kovakka), gooseberry, red onion, tomato, cauliflower, cabbage (white and violet), long beans and capsicum (yellow and red) which were listed as dangerously contaminated in the first report published in June, have made it to the safe- to eat category in the current report, indicating that pesticide safety is becoming a priority for farmers. The laboratory has taken up periodic analysis of vegetable samples at under a project titled ‘Production and marketing of safe to eat vegetables for sale through government outlets. Thomas Biju Mathew, Professor and principal investigator of the project, said the pesticide residue level in the dangerously contaminated vegetables was found to be high in samples collected from different outlets. This, he said, indicated that most of these products were sourced from the same place, probably outside Kerala. “The high-level of profenophos residue in carrot and mint, curry and coriander leaf is a matter of grave concern. It shows that the pesticide is widely misused by vegetable farmers in the neighbouring States.” The report of the study has been put up on the website of the Public Relations Department, Government of Kerala (www.prd.kerala.gov.in). It also contains information on methods to remove pesticide residue from vegetables using vinegar, salt, water and tamarind paste.
Samples of 14 vegetables found contaminated
Banned pesticides being used in neighbouring States
Water resources dept. looks to rejuvenate tanks
The Water Resources Department has sought details of encroachments in water bodies in Tiruvallur from the district administration as part of its efforts to rejuvenate them. There are nearly 340 tanks in the Tiruvallur district, several of which have been considerably encroached on. The department has sought the support of the Tiruvallur collectorate to survey the extent of encroachments in the water bodies and collate data on them. Sources in the WRD said that this would help the department to prepare an action plan for the restoration of water bodies under the Tamil Nadu Protection of Tanks and Eviction of Encroachment Act, 2007. “We want the district administration to survey the extent of encroached structures so that we can demarcate the boundary of every tank across the district,” said an official. The water bodies in urban and peri-urban areas are commonly encroached by residential structures as in the case of Vellanur and Thandurai near Pattabiram. In rural areas, several people encroach on the dry space of the lake area and cultivate crops. For instance, the tank in Senji is heavily encroached. Nearly two-third of the lake area is used to cultivate paddy. V. Raman, a farmer in Thiruvalangadu, said farmers depended on the water bodies for irrigation. “Several of them have been left neglected. The department concerned must desilt and deepen the water bodies to increase their capacity to hold water,” he said. Officials of the WRD said that the tanks that contribute to irrigation such as those in Poorivakkam and Athikavanur, in the district would be given priority. Several supply channels and surplus courses also suffer from similar issues.

About 130 tanks are being taken up for restoration under the Irrigated Agriculture Modernisation and Water-Bodies Restoration and Management (IAMWARM) project. However, several of them still are affected by encroachments. Once the data about the encroachments are collated, the process to issue notices and evict them would begin. The department has sought details of encroachments in water bodies in Tiruvallur
Water released for irrigation
Water was released through the Thanthai Periyar and PTR Channels from Periyar dam to irrigate single crop in dry and wetlands in Theni and Uthamapalayam blocks on Friday. A total of 5,146 acres – 830 acres in Uthamapalayam and 4,316 acres in Theni – will benefit. Releasing the water at Uthamapalayam, Minister for Finance O. Paneerselvam said that 100 cusecs of water would be released for 120 days continuously for irrigation. Farmers in Chinnamanur, Seepalakotti, and Veppampatti in Uthamapalayam block and Seelayampatti Poomalaigundu, Dharmapuri, Thadicherry, Venkachalapuram, Koduvilarpatti, Jangalpatti, Govindanagaram and Balakrishnapuram villages in Theni block would benefit. A total of 468 acres of wetlands and 4,678 acres of dry lands under the ayacut of these channels would be irrigated. He appealed to the farmers to use water judiciously and raise short term crops for better income. The PWD officials informed that quantum of release in future would be purely on the basis of the storage position in Periyar dam. If there were any slump in storage or failure of monsoon, turn system would be introduced to maintain supply to protect standing crops. As the combined credit in Vaigai and Periyar dams have crossed 6,000 mcft mark, the PWD engineers released the water.
Water level
Water level in the Papanasam dam on Friday stood at 102.55 feet (maximum level is 143 feet). The dam had an inflow of 341.81 cusecs and 1,503.52 cusecs of water was discharged from the dam.
The water level in Manimuthar dam stood at 55.30 feet (118 feet). The dam had an inflow of 44 cusecs and 325 cusecs was discharged.
Kanyakumari The water level in Pechipparai dam stood at 23.35 feet, 61.35 feet in Perunchani, 9.38 feet in Chittar I, 9.48 feet in Chittar II and 33.96 feet in Mambazathuraiyaru dam.

Weather

INSAT PICTURE AT 14.00 hrs. Observations recorded at 8.30 a.m. on October 04th.

Max Min R TR

New Delhi (Plm)

33 22 0 4

New Delhi (Sfd)

34 23 0 4

Chandigarh

33 23 2 7

Hissar

33 21 0 4

Bhuntar

31 17 4 4

Shimla

21 13 1 61

Jammu

31 22 60 110

Srinagar

29 13 0 0

Amritsar

33 22 8 8

Patiala

32 23 6 6

Jaipur

30 22 0 tr

Udaipur

31 21 0 1

Allahabad

29 25 10 20

Lucknow

25 21 8 14

Varanasi

32 25 tr 15

Dehradun

27 20 1 17

Agartala

34 24 4 61

Ahmedabad

34 26 0 24

Bangalore

29 19 0 tr

Bhubaneshwar

31 25 10 50

Bhopal

27 22 5 8

Chennai

34 24 5 17

Guwahati

33 23 87 88

Hyderabad

30 23 1 8

Kolkata

32 25 11 29

Mumbai

32 26 0 0

Nagpur

28 23 25 109

Patna

30 25 0 1

Pune

32 21 0 0

Thiruvananthapuram

32 24 0 14

Imphal

32 22 3 3

Shillong

24 16 3 8

The columns show maximum and minimum temperature in Celsius, rainfall during last 24

hours (tr-trace) and total rainfall in mm since 1st October.

MAINLY DRY WEATHER

South-west monsoon has been vigorous over west Uttar Pradesh and active over east Uttar

Pradesh. The withdrawal line of South-west monsoon continues to pass through Kalpa,

Hissar, Jodhpur and Nalia.

Rainfall: Rain/thundershowers have occurred at many places over Uttar Pradesh and at

isolated places over rest of the region. The chief amounts of rainfall in cm. are: (6 cm. and

above) PUNJAB: Madhopur and Phangota 6 each, EAST RAJASTHAN: Bari 14, Baseri and

Sapau 11 each, Roopwas 10 and Dholpur and Rajakhera 8 each, EAST UTTAR PRADESH:

Naraini 6 and WEST UTTAR PRADESH: Garotha 17, Agra IAF 14, Rath 13, Budaun and

Jasrana 9 each, Karhal 8, Bareilly CWC, Jalesar and Kasganj 7 each and Kirawali, Etah and

Mathura CWC 6 each.

MAXIMUM TEMPERTURE: The maximum temperature fell appreciably in west Uttar

Pradesh and Uttarakhand, fell in east Uttar Pradesh and changed little over rest of the region.

They were above normal in Jammu and Kashmir, appreciably below normal in east

Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand and normal in rest of the region. The highest

maximum temperature in the region was 37.7ºC recorded at Jaisalmer (Rajasthan).

MINIMUM TEMPERTURE: The minimum temperature fell in west Uttar Pradesh and

changed little over rest of the region. They were markedly above normal in Punjab,

appreciably above normal in Haryana, Jammu and Kashmir, Rajasthan and Uttarakhand,

above normal in Himachal Pradesh and normal in rest of the region. The lowest minimum

temperature in the plains was 18.2ºC recorded at Bareilly (Uttar Pradesh).

FORECAST FOR REGION VALID UNTIL THE MORNING OF 06th OCTOBER 2013 :Rain/thundershowers may occur at many places over east-Uttar Pradesh. Rain/thundershowers may occur at many places over southeast parts of west-Uttar Pradesh during next 24 hours and decrease thereafter. Rain/thundershowers may occur at one or two places over Uttarakhand, east Rajasthan and rest parts of west Uttar Pradesh. Rain/thundershowers may occur at one or two places over Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh during next 48 hours and mainly dry weather thereafter. Mainly dry weather over rest of the region. HEAVY RAINFALL WARNING: Heavy rainfall may occur at one or two places over east Uttar Pradesh during 48 hours and over southeast parts of west-Uttar Pradesh during next 24 hours.

FORECAST FOR DELHI AND NEIGHBOURHOOD VALID UNTIL THE MORNING OF 06th OCTOBER 2013: Partly cloudy sky. Very light rain/thundershowers could occur in some areas.

Weather

Chennai - INDIA Today's Weather
Cloudy
Rain: 0 Humidity: 89 Wind: normal

Saturday, Oct 5 Max Min 36o | 27o
Sunrise: 05:58 Sunset: 05:57 Barometer: 1007.0

Tomorrow's Forecast

Sunny

Sunday, Oct 6 Max Min 34o | 25o

Extended Forecast for a week

Monday

Tuesday

Oct 7

Oct 8

Wednesday Oct 9

Thursday Oct 10

Friday Oct 11

34o | 26o Partly Cloudy

34o | 26o Partly Cloudy

31o | 26o Overcast

32o | 27o Overcast

32o | 27o Overcast

India pushes for deal on farm support
NEW DELHI: Commerce & industry minister Anand Sharmais expected to make a strong pitch for reaching a final deal on a revision of the domestic support cap for agriculture when WTO's new director general Roberto Azevedo meets him on Monday to seek India's help for a breakthrough at the Bali ministerial meeting in December.
After a year of negotiations, the WTO membership has agreed on an interim solution, which will prevent countries from initiating action if the procurement from farmers breaches the ceiling of 10% of the value of production. With international prices on the rise, and local price fixed at 1986-88 levels, most developing countries with large populations are now staring at the prospect of breaching the limit. Food sold through the public distribution system also faces restrictions.

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Dairy farm workers call off protest in Manapparai