Land of Milk, flowers and Vegetables turning Concrete jungles in CRDA

Land of Milk, flowers and Vegetables turning Concrete jungles in CRDA

Land Of Milk, Flowers And Vegetables Turning Concrete Jungles In CRDA. A fitting case for reconsideration and a major offensive against the...

A fitting case for reconsideration and a major offensive against the environment is in the offing as the Chandrababu Naidu government gears up for transforming the Vegetable bowl and land of money and honey in the CRDA into a concrete jungle.

Given the abundance of agricultural land in the three mandals of Thullur, Mangalagiri and Tadepalli, one may be tempted to call it a land of milk and honey. Cultivable area in these mandals, which have been notified as the Capital region, is a veritable vegetable bowl of Andhra Pradesh.

Transformation of the fertile area into an urban agglomerate could have serious consequences on food security, prompting a cross-section of people to declare at least the river bed area as a green belt. It could also affect the rural economy in a significant way, throwing thousands of farm labourers out of the fields, say environmental experts.

The total cultivable area of vegetables, fruits and flowering plants is 5,128 hectares. Unlike other agricultural crops such as paddy, cotton and maize, the horticultural crops are being grown throughout the year using modern drip irrigation techniques.

The Department of Horticulture has collected particulars of the crop area in the three mandals. Thullur, chosen for the construction of core capital area, has a farm area of 2,260 hectares on which vegetables, fruit-yielding trees and flowering plants are being cultivated. Banana crop alone is cultivated in 1,180 hectares. Banana cultivated using drip irrigation method has high yield of 30,000 kg per acre. Traders from north India arrive here during March-April and pay advances before placing orders for the produce .

More than 25 varieties of vegetables are grown in 2,911.2 hectares in the three mandals. Some of the high-yielding varieties of vegetables are Yam, which yields 16,000 kg per acre, Donda -186.8 hectares) and Bhendi (459.2 hectares). The other vegetables include Onion cultivated in 645.6 hectares, Cauliflower (314 hectares) and Ridge Gourd (140 hectares).

The area close to river bed also has a vast expanse of flowering plants adding a touch of elegance. Jasmine is grown on 219 hectares, followed by Rose 207 hectares and Mari Gold 118.4 hectares. The flowers are plucked by evening and sold in the flower markets at Vijayawada and Guntur.

Team of environmentalists who have been visiting the area since last one week say that it was a huge waste of nature. “The State government should seriously think of declaring the river bed area as green belt,” says agro scientists and environmentalists from various universities of who made a visit during weekend in a last pitch effort to hit the TDP and Chandrababu government's conscience against CRDA in that region.

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