Aim for lesser investment, higher yield, farmers told

Field demonstration of food grains facilitates agriculturists

Aim for lesser investment, higher yield, farmers told

Under the community-based Lake Development Project programme, which was implemented from 2002 to 2008, with financial aid from the World Bank, the State government has successfully undertaken the development of several lakes through its Watershed Development Associations, informed Project Co-ordinator of University of Agricultural Sciences Dr G Eshwarappa.

He was speaking after inaugurating the field demonstration of foodgrains at Meleri village of Mulbagal taluk in Kolar district on Friday.

The event was organised by the Watershed Development Project, Karnataka community-based Lake Development Project Aid Services, Kolar district Project unit of the Bangalore University of Agricultural Sciences and Community Guidance team of JSYS Shri Chennakeshavaswamy Lake Users Association.

Dr G Eshwarappa said there was an increase in the yield of food crops cultivated in the command area of the lakes which were rejuvenated under the Watershed Development Project Association, through the Lake Development Associations. The total increase in the yield was 40 per cent. Thus lake rejuvenation contributed towards yield in the food crops, he said.

Changing times
He also explained about the inevitability of adopting new methods of cultivation, in accordance to the changing times, ensuring less investment and multiple yield. It is extremely disappointing to note that today's youths from the rural areas were migrating to the cities in search of jobs, abandoning agriculture, Dr G Eshwarappa expressed.

He explained that 15 farmers in Meleri village had cultivated a new variety of paddy in the 12 acres of command area, out of the total 58 acres of the command area of the water tank. The cultivation was taken up under the Watershed Development Project. This was an excellent example of the farmers implementing scientific methods in agriculture.
Speaking on the occasion, agriculture expert of the Planning unit Shriranga said thanks to technology, one can increase the crop yield by utilising less water.

Several big farmers were improving their economic conditions by opting for alternate cropping pattern and have earned good profits. But the small farmers, who constitute about 33 per cent of the farming community, have no other option but to implement scientific methods in agriculture, in order to make themselves economically self-sufficient, he added.

Suicide
Joint Director of Agriculture Department of Kolar district Chikkanna said it was sad to note that owing to the increase in the expenses involved in agriculture, most of the farmers were now resorting to suicide as the last option, out of frustration.

In such trying circumstances, scientific methods of agriculture and watershed development programmes were a boon in guise to the farmers. The field demonstration enables the farmers to adopt more yield at lower investment, along with maintaining the quality of soil, organic manure, etc, Chikkanna explained.

Environmentalist M N Raghav, taluk panchayat member Raghupathi Reddy, farmers Ramakrishnappa, Sharadamma and Shrinivas spoke on the watershed development project.

Chennakeshavaswamy, Lake Development Committee President Saraswathamma, Mulbagal Agriculture Assistant Director Chandrashekharan and several others were present on the occasion.

Prof Gubbaiah spoke at the field demonstration. Dr Gopinath welcomed.  Hundreds of farmers from the nearby villages took part in the programme and also attended the field demonstration.

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