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The 24x7 power supply under Gujarat Government’s Jyotigram scheme has dazzled diamond units in Saurashtra. However, it is not the case with farmers in and around Surat district.
Gujarat Khedut Samaj (GKS) leaders say farmers in south Gujarat have been receiving eight-hour power supply to irrigate their fields. Farmers need electricity for 16 hours, but the state government had agreed to supply power for 10 hours only.
GKS president Jayesh Patel told TOI, “Gujarat Government takes pride in adding glitter to the villages associated with diamond business by providing them with 24x7 electricity under Jyotigram. But, poor farmers, who are known as ‘annadata’, are deprived of adequate power supply to irrigate their farms.”
Patel added, “Recently, GKS had demanded 16-hour power supply to farmers, which was reduced to 10 and further to eight hours. With less water in the reservoirs across the region, the only alternative to irrigate the fields is borewells, which requires power.”
Farmer leaders stated that electricity supply is provided for agriculture purpose during night hours. There are standing crops, including sugar cane, which require adequate amount of water for irrigation.
Jayesh Delad, farmer leader, said, “The situation is such that the farmers will have to stay put in their fields during night hours even during Diwali to ensure that their fields are properly irrigated and that too within eight hours. We demand that the government take a serious note of this issue and provide electricity for 16 hours to the farmers in south Gujarat.”
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