Andhra Pradesh Agriculture Minister Kanna Lakshmi Narayana Saturday said 6.77 lakh hectares of crops were destroyed in rains and its impact on the state's food production could be assessed after water recedes.
Of the total crop damaged during the last four days, 3.26 lakh hectares account for paddy and 3.08 lakh hectares was cotton, he said here. The Minister was in New Delhi to address a press conference about the forthcoming World Agriculture Forum Congress 2013 and Agri-Tech Trade Fair in Hyderabad between November 4 and 7. Asked whether the crop loss could hit the annual food production of Andhra Pradesh, he said an assessment would be made only after water recedes.
We anticipated that food production would be affected after Cyclone Nilam had struck last year. But we were able to reach normal food production during Rabi season, he stated. Kanna Lakshmi Narayana said the normal annual production of the state ranged from 1.90 lakh metric tonnes to 2 lakh metric tonnes, wherein the food production in 2012 was 1.98 lakh metric tonnes including kharif and rabi seasons. He said areas between Srikakulam and Nellore districts were the worst affected due to incessant rains that lashed the coastal state in the last four days. The Minister also said the state government would take steps to compensate affected farmers through measures such as settlement of insurance, bank and institutional loans. Meanwhile, Andhra Pradesh BJP president G Kishan Reddy today alleged that the Centre has not extended financial assistance sought by the state government for carrying out relief work in the wake of Nilam cyclone that had ravaged Andhra Pradesh in 2012.