A high-level meeting held here on Thursday to review the Niravu scheme for agriculture development has decided to take up a slew of programmes targeting different sections.

The Department of Agriculture will distribute poultry birds to all students from classes I to X in 12 panchayats across the State under plans to promote poultry farming.

Speaking after the review, Minister for Agriculture K.P. Mohanan said the project was being taken up in 12 Assembly constituencies. He said agro bazaars would be set up in all constituencies at a cost of Rs.two lakh each.

The Vegetable and Fruit Promotion Council Kerala (VFPCK) had finalised plans to distribute five lakh vegetable seed kits to schoolchildren and households across the State. An official press note issued here said Niravu grama sabhas would be convened to discuss the package.

Model horticulture farms would be set up in all constituencies on one acre of land. Fruit tree grafts, tissue culture plantain saplings, and 5,000 tuber kits would be distributed to farmers. The Kerala Livestock Development Board would set up four hi-tech dairy farms at Koothuparamba, Kodungalloor, Kalpetta, and Pala.

The press note said the State-level screening committee of the Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY) had approved a Rs.144-lakh scheme to set up vermicompost units and a Rs.113-lakh project to establish a fruit processing plant. An outlay of Rs.94.5 lakh had been approved for a fish-farming project in ‘pokkali' fields at Paravur and Kodungalloor. A Rs.302.2-lakh scheme submitted by VFPCK to promote fruit, vegetable, and tuber farming had also been ratified. T.N. Prathapan, MLA, and senior officials of the Agriculture and Animal Husbandry Departments attended the review meeting.