Shimla: After crops were battered by a recent spell of hailstorm in upper regions of district Shimla, Himachal Pradesh Congress Committee (HPCC) General Secretary Rajneesh Kimta has demanded the state government assess the damage caused to the crops and immediately provide financial relief to the fruit growers.

Kimta said that fruit crops especially apples have been damaged due to heavy hailstorms in upper areas of the Shimla district while crops in lower regions of the state have been greatly affected by drought.

He said that more than half of the population of the state is dependent upon agriculture and horticulture. He said that the recent spell of thunderstorms and hailstorms have damaged fruits and vegetables, the only means of their livelihood.

He said that farmers and orchardists are worried, therefore government needs to take immediate action to provide financial relief to the farmers of the state.