Somnath Mitra, Singur: Although there is no possibility of cyclone in the state, potato growers in Hughli district are worried about the forecast of heavy rains. They are fearing that if there is more rain during sowing of potato seeds, the yield will decrease.
The impact of Cyclone Jawad could lead to disaster in Bengal. The Alipore Meteorological Department said there could be heavy to very heavy rains with thunderstorms in several districts today. It will also rain on Monday in Kolkata and Gangetic West Bengal.
The Alipore Meteorological Department has said that cyclone Jawad is not likely to hit the state. However, it has started raining in several districts of South Bengal, including Kolkata, since yesterday. In this situation, the cloud of fear is not moving from the minds of the farmers of Hughli. Because, even though the cyclone did not come, the meteorological department has forecast heavy rains across South Bengal. And that is why they are looking at the vermilion clouds.
Jagmohan Mandal, a farmer from Singur, said that if it rains, there will be no more potato cultivation. Although if I cultivate later, the potato will become smaller, it will not be good. Production will be greatly reduced.
Khanakul, Arambagh, Goghat, Tarkeshwar, Jangipara – Damodar, Rupnarayan, a large part of these areas on the banks of Shilabati river have been submerged three times before the onset of monsoon this year till Pujo. Farmers in the area are skeptical about the amount of potato cultivation if it rains heavily again.
Sukumar Bera, another farmer from Singur, said the rains had caused a lot of damage to paddy. The soil is still wet. After that if there is heavy rain then cultivation can no longer be done, fertilizer and seeds will remain at home. The seeds of those who planted them will rot.
According to the Hooghly District Agriculture Department, one third of the total potato production in the state is in Hooghly. In Hooghly district, potato is cultivated on an average of 90,000 hectares of land every year. Hooghly produces 28 to 30 lakh metric tons of potatoes annually.
Traders are fearing that prices will go up due to shortage of production in potato cultivation in Hooghly. Prahlad Mandal, secretary of Singur-Ratanpur Potato Traders’ Association, said if there was heavy rain now, cultivation would be delayed for another 15-20 days. The month of Agrahayan will come to an end. As a result, production will increase and next year the price of potato will cross 50 rupees.
Jayant Parui, agriculture officer of Hooghly district, said that after the disaster, the work of planting potatoes in all the lands will be completed in the next 10 days. If there is a long winter, there will be no problem.
So, don’t get too much rain. The potato farmers of Hughli are now praying looking at Varunadev.