SRINAGAR, May 26: The Jammu and Kashmir National Conference President and Member of the Parliament from Srinagar Dr. Farooq Abdullah today expressed anguish over the losses incurred by people due to continuous heavy hailstorm and intense rains in north, South and central Kashmir areas of Kashmir.
The sudden and heavy hailstorm that swept through dozens of villages across north Kashmir has left a trail of devastation by damaging orchards and various other standing crops, Dr. Farooq said, adding, “among the most affected locations include Rafiabad, Wagoora, Kreeri and Ladoora areas of Baramulla besides Haihama, Gutlipora, Kralpora, Trehgam, Sogam, Drugmulla, Salkoot and other villages of Kupwara even as many areas including Wagoora, Watergam, Pattan, Sopore, Khan Sahib, Budgam, Kulgam, Shopian, Pulwama also witnessed unprecedented hailstorm.
The reports suggest that the vegetative parts of the fruit-laden trees, including apple, cherry, and pear orchards, have suffered extensive damage, endangering the livelihoods of countless farmers and workers who rely on this sector.
He said the sheer degree of damage to standing crops, public infrastructure and private properties makes it imperative for Government agencies to step in and provide relief to the affected. “I urge the district and divisional administration to depute revenue teams to assess the losses to people so that the amount of compensation is worked out and distributed forthwith as well,” he added.
Lamenting the non-implementation of the Crop Insurance, Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) and the restructured Weather-based Crop Insurance Schemes in Jammu & Kashmir, he said that the farmers and orchardists will heave a sigh of relief if these schemes are implemented.
Pressing for full MSP as compensation, Dr Farooq demanded that compensation to the affected farmers should be given on the basis of MSP. “Prosperous and developed farmers are key to prosperous and developed Jammu & Kashmir. There was much clamour about bringing the horticulture produce under the ambit of NCIS, starting with apple and cherry from this year. So far nothing had materialised. The implementation of insurance schemes would enable our farmers to manage risk in agriculture and horticulture products in a better way,” he said.