BANGALORE: While a centrally sponsored scheme has been announced for large-scale rejuvenation of coconut groves at a total cost of Rs 2,275 crore in Kerala, Karnataka has been totally ignored. Former Prime Minister H D Devegowda on Saturday demanded the Karnataka government to take immediate steps to examine the scope of framing and implementing a comprehensive plan to help the coconut growers in the state, with the help of the centre. Gowda had earlier written to chief minister Siddaramaiah on this issue. The plea has met with a positive response.
The letter of Gowda coincides with a drive of the government to tap the full potential of the coconut sector. Siddaramaiah has assured that government will take steps to put pressure on centre to announce a relief package on the lines of one already offered to Kerala coconut growers. In Kerala, Gowda said d the centrally sponsored scheme has been announced for large-scale rejuvenation of coconut gardens at a total cost of Rs 2,275 crore with a subsidy component of Rs 478.5 crore. Under the scheme taken up on a mission mode farmers would get a compensation of Rs 13,000 per hectare. In Karnataka, Gowda said nearly a third of the coconut trees in the state have perished resulting in a massive loss of around Rs 1200 crore to farmers who predominantly depend on coconut yields. The impacted areas were in the districts of Chitradurga, Davangere, Tumkur, Ramanagara, Mandya and Bangalore rural besides Hassan, Shimoga and chikmagalur, he said.