Officials will offer technical guidance on various aspects of agriculture

Farmers’ festival, which seeks to sensitise farmers to the latest farming techniques, new crop varieties, and government schemes will be held at 507 revenue villages in the district commencing Sunday. The festival organised for the second consecutive year will go on till May 20.

The festival aims to bring about a convergence of agriculture, horticulture, agricultural engineering, agri business and animal husbandry departments, and officials will offer technical guidance to farmers on various aspects of agriculture and allied activities under one roof.

Khadi and Village Industries Minister T. P. Poonachi inaugurated the festival at Navalurkuttapattu in Manikandam union on Sunday and distributed subsidised farm equipment and prizes to beneficiaries who had maintained the free milch animals, given to them under the government scheme, well.

Mr. Poonachi said the festival would be held at 16,995 revenue villages in the State during which latest scientific advances, mini exhibitions, and audio-visual programmes on success stories would be organised for the benefit of farmers.

Experts from different fields would offer technical guidance and support to farmers. Farmers attending the festival would also be provided free food.

Collector Jayashree Muralidharan said the festival was held at 470 villages in the district last year and nearly 1.15 lakh farmers attended them. Soil samples were tested during the festival and over 13,000 farmers were given integrated handbooks.

The festival, she said, was intended to encourage farmers to adopt latest cultivation techniques, improve productivity, and motivate youth to take to agriculture. The focus of this year’s festival would be on doubling productivity, promotion of system of rice intensification technique, pulses cultivation, precision farming, drip irrigation, and eradication of weeds.

The Minister distributed cash rewards of Rs.5,000, Rs.4,000, and Rs.3,000 to the top three well-maintained cows given under the State government’s free milch animals distribution scheme. For the best maintained goats, cash rewards of Rs.3,000, Rs.2,500, and Rs.2,000 were given.

M. Paranjothi and N. R. Sivapathy, MLAs, were present.