Sunday, 25 May 2008

Rain scarcity affects paddy transplantation


May 24: Farmers of Thedtsho, Phangyul and Rubesa geogs in Wangdue dzongkhag are once again worried that they may not be able to complete the transplantation on time.

In many rice-growing dzongkhags, paddy transplantation has begun but farmers here have yet to begin. Farmers say acute shortage of water has left them at the mercy of the monsoon rains.

The vast tracts of paddy fields belong to the farmers of Thedtsho, Phangyul and Rubesa geogs. The fields stretch as far as you can see. Most of the fields remain empty. In some fields, paddy has been transplanted but they are beginning to wither under the sun.

Wearing round bamboo hats, their sleeves rolled up and their backs bent, a few farmers are busy transplanting paddy. They sing along as they go about their work. They said they would be able to transplant only a few fields with the water from recent rainfall.

Some farmers said they have planted maize in the paddy fields because they do not want to leave the fields uncultivated. They said when they cannot transplant paddy on time, their harvest suffers and often they are compelled to avail loans.

Namgay Wangchuk, the gup of Thedtsho geog said he has raised the problem in the Geog Yargey Tshogchung (GYT) and suggested diverting water from the Punatsangchu using water pumps. He said the Dzongkhag administration has plans to build water reservoirs to collect rainwater.

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