Water scarcity hits chilli cultivation


 Davorlim farmers and vegetable growers are running from pillar to post as their crops, including chilli production, have been affected for want of water supply in the last few days.
Aggrieved vegetable growers blamed the construction of a water tank in the village to supply raw irrigation water to the industries at the Verna Industrial Estate. Farmers maintained that the natural water in the nearby pond which was used for irrigation now flows into the water tank under construction, leaving hardly any water for irrigation. Says a farmer Remetina Colaco, “Cultivating crops and growing vegetables have been our own only sources of livelihood. But now we have no water to irrigate our fields. Where will we turn to no?”
Rosalina Colaco echoed similar sentiments. “The chilli crop has been damaged, while vegetable production, including lady fingers and local variety of vegetable, has been badly affected. We had knocked the doors of the village panchayat, but there’s no relief forthcoming from the authorities,” she added.
Village Sarpanch Herculano Niasso sympathized with the sentiments expressed by the beleaguered farmers. He recalled that Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar had promised to first make available water to the farmers than to the Verna Industries. “We had told the contractor to supply water to the fields. Initially, the contractor supplied water to the fields, but farmers now claim there’s no water to irrigate the fields,” he said.
Niasso said the water shortage to the fields has come to the fore since the water tank under construction has gone deep with the natural water flowing inside the tank leaving no water for the vegetable growers.  [H]