The State government has allocated Rs.114 cr. for millet cultivation

The State government has allocated Rs.124 crore for farm mechanisation, said S.Damodaran, Agriculture Minister, here on Friday.

He distributed crop loans, seeds at 50 per cent subsidy and oil engines with Rs.10,000 subsidy each at Primary Agriculture Co-operative Society at Mangudi near Tiruvarur.

He distributed the benefits estimated at Rs.15.4 lakh to 92 persons. He said the State government had allocated Rs.114 crore for cultivation of millets. Farmers’ festivals had been conducted in 16,000 villages to create awareness among farmers about various technologies in the field of agriculture.

Later, interacting with farmers at the collectorate, the Minister said the government planned to increase the distribution of subsidised pesticides. “There is a need for pesticides (bio-pesticides). They will be supplied in adequate quantity with subsidy. The Agriculture Department will conduct awareness camps on direct sowing throughout the State,” the Minister said.

S.Ranganathan, Secretary, Cauvery Delta Farmers Welfare Association, said that farmers had taken up direct sowing on a large scale in Tiruvarur district. Efficient water management was the need of the hour and the Public Works Department should ensure this, Mr. Ranganathan said.

P.S.Masilamani, a farmer, said that dredging of irrigation canals should be done periodically. P.R. Pandiyan, a farmer from Kottur, appealed to the Minister to establish a separate central cooperative bank for Tiruvarur.

The Minister saw direct sown field using machinery at Thirukaravasal and manual direct sown field at another village.

R. Kamaraj, Food Minister; Sandeep Saxena, Secretary, Agriculture; and M. Rajendran, Director of Agriculture S. Natarajan, Collector, accompanied the Minister during his visit.