'Return to traditional farming'

Union Minister of State for Railways, K H Muniyappa has emphasised the need to restrain farmers from sinking borewells at will.
TAKING STOCK Union Minister of State for Railways K H Muniyappa speaking at a progress review meeting in Chintamani on Saturday. Legislators V Muniyappa, T A Narayanaswamy, Deputy Commissioner Anwar Pasha, ZP president Vinuta Srinivas are seen.  DH photo
The agrarian community should be encouraged to continue the time-tested and simple farming techniques of earlier days. Farmers should be veered away from the tendency to sink borewells as and when they desire, the minister opined while speaking at a district-level progress review meeting held at Gurubhavan  here on Saturday.

“Rains may not have set in on time, owing to altered climate conditions. Crops might have been affected owing to scant rains. However, statistics reveal that seasonal rainfall is copious,” the minister noted.

Officers’ role
Emphasising the role of officers in changing the mindset of farmers, Muniyappa said that Gram Panchayats have been getting enough funds - to the tune of one-and-a-half crore per annum every year. The official machinery should gear up to change the course of agriculture. Each Gram Panchayats should disclose the extent of arable land in their jurisdiction, the details of the grants released and the works taken up. He said that agricultural has been flourishing in Israel, which gets barely 10 pc of the rains in Karnataka.

Member of Legislative Council Y A Narayanaswamy, who also spoke in the meeting said that grants of Rs 400 crore has been returned unutillised last year.

He disclosed that the Union government has been releasing enough funds under Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan and the officers, instead of returning the funds, should chalk out programmes for productive utilisation of state money.

Legislator V Muniyappa asked the officers to ensure adequate stock of fertilisers and seeds during the rainy season, to meet any spurt in demand. Farmers usually rush for purchasing the fertilisers and seeds immediately after rains and the administration should be geared up to meet such demands, he said.

Officers of several departments submitted the progress reports. Deputy Commissioner Anwar Pasha, Zilla Panchayat president Vinuta Srinivas, Superintendent of Police Ravindranath and others were present in the meeting.

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