According to local sources, it has been reported that even as farmers’ organisations have urged the State government to take steps to get Tamil Nadu’s due share of water in the Cauvery from Karnataka, the Agriculture Department has planned to popularise Co-51, a short duration paddy variety in the district during the forthcoming kuruvai season.The new variety of 110 days yields 10 per cent more grain than ADT-43. Further, according to the Agriculture Department that an average yield potential of Co-51 is 2650 kg per acre and this variety was released by Directorate of Plant Breeding and Genetics of the Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, Coimbatore, during 2013.
Further, in this regard it has been revealed that CO-51 variety, being a fine grain variety, offers the advantage of being a non-lodging variety, a characteristic which is very much required for kuruvai. In addition, it has the preferred plant characterstics such as broad dark green leaves which leads to higher photosynthesis, medium height (90-100 cm), broader leafs (2 cm width) and lengthy panicle. Each panicle bears on an average 250-300 grains; with a panicle length of 23 to 28 cm. Moreover, the variety has also better resistance to green leaf hopper, brown plant hopper and paddy blast disease.
As per other attributes of variety is concerned, Co.51 variety with white medium slender rice is good for cooking and has high a milling percentage of 69 per cent and head rice recovery of 63 per cent. It has been narrated by the Department of Agriculture that it has stocked about 34 tonnes of CO.51 certified seeds in the agricultural extension centres in the Kuruvai growing blocks of the district including Lalgudi, Andhanallur, Manikandam, Musiri and Mannachanallur.
Meanwhile, in this matter Mr P.Viswanathan, President of the Tamizhaga Eri Mattrum Attru Pasana Vivasayigal Sangam, has urged the new government to initiate talks with the Karnataka and Central governments to get Tamil Nadu’s share of water in the Cauvery so that farmers could take up kuruvai cultivation this year. Further, it has been stated that over the past five years, Tamil Nadu was not able to get adequate water for kuruvai in the Cauvery affecting kuruvai cultivation in about 16 lakhs acres in the state.