• Breaking News

    Untimely snowfall damages apple orchards in south Kashmir


    Hardwork of decades goes in waste, compensation only hope left: Growers

    Jahangeer Ganaie

    Shopian, Oct 23 (KNO): The untimely snowfall has done severe damage to the orchards in south Kashmir particularly in Shopian district causing huge losses to the growers in the area.

    Locals from different areas of Kashmir told news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO) that their orchards were damaged due to untimely snowfall for the third consecutive year.

    The damage as per officials was severe in Shopian and few other parts of South Kashmir where people hadn't plucked the fruits yet.

    People from Sedov, Keller, Hirpora, Kachdoora, Ramanagri, Aherbal Shadimarg,Shopian and other hamlets of South Kashmir said that they around 50 to 60 percent fruit was on trees after which they would have taken pruning process but untimely snowfall has damaged everything.

    Nawaz Ahmad, a resident of Kumdulan area of Shopian, said that 40 percent of apples were on trees in the area but untimely snowfall has not only damaged the fruits but the trees on which they had spent decades.

    Bashir, a resident of Sedov hamlet, said that snowfall has damaged their full crop as their most produce was still on trees.

    Growers said that due to killing of non- locals, many laborers left early this year and the shortage of labourers have delayed the plucking of the fruits.

    Following the snowfall, social media is flooded with photos and videos showing the magnitude of damage to orchards and fruits.

    Many growers were seen spraying water and thrashing the trees so that snow won't accumulate on them which would otherwise damage the plant.

    Trees full of apples were also seen uprooted while branches of trees were also seen damaged in the orchards.

    Kashmir has been witnessing untimely snowfall for the last three years , however, in the last two years snowfall started in the first week of November but this year, snowfall started in October.

    Growers from different areas said that they don't have any hope on the government as according to them the authorities last time paid them compensation of Rs 4000 per head when the damage was in crores.

    However, people from different areas appealed to the government to compensate them fully otherwise they won't be able to survive as they have faced severe damages since the last three years.

    Meanwhile, officials of the horticulture said that they have been asked to assess the damage to fruits as well as trees and forward it to higher ups.

    They said that concerned advisor has asked the officials to provide all possible support to the orchardists—(KNO)

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