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Commercial crops to get govt push; officials on toes for action plan

Commercial crops to get govt push; officials on toes for action plan
Highlights

Chief Secretary SK Joshi directed officials concerned to prepare an action plan in 15 days on integrated development of commercial crops like turmeric...

Hyderabad: Chief Secretary SK Joshi directed officials concerned to prepare an action plan in 15 days on integrated development of commercial crops like turmeric and chilli by discussing with farmers, scientists, businessmen and traders.

The Chief Secretary on Wednesday chaired a meeting in the Secretariat on the development of spices in the State with the officials. Speaking on the occasion, the Chief Secretary directed the officials of Spices Board, Horticulture and Agriculture departments to give timely advice to the farmers to go in for sowing commercial crops and enable them to adopt latest practices.

Stating that 100 per cent drip irrigation was provided to farmers, Joshi asked the officials to prepare roadmaps for three and five years on development of turmeric and chilli crops. The plan should help the farming community to reap in better benefits by getting good yield, he said. He stressed the need for a perfect plan of action comprising integrated pest management, market linkage, buyer sellers meet, stabilisation of prices, boilers, polishers supply and availability of assorted seeds and others.

He also sought immediate steps for value addition to turmeric and chilli crops enabling the farmers to flourish. While 70,000 farmers were sowing turmeric in 1.10 hectares, 1.40 lakh farmers were cultivating chilli in districts like Khammam, Nizamabad, Warangal, Jagtial, Jayashankar Bhupalapally, Mahabubabad, Bhadradri and others. “Send special officials to these places after giving them necessary training and advice the farmers on crops for better yield through proper use of fertilizers and pesticides,” he added.

Agriculture Department Principal Secretary Partha Sarathi said farmers were cultivating eight commercial crops such as ginger, garlic in addition to turmeric and chilli. The State government would soon set up a Spices Park at Padagal in Nizamabad district at a cost of Rs 30 crore, he said. The government would extend all possible support to these farmers in coordination with the Centre, he added.

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