Collector S. Natarajan launched the silk worm rearing programme of the department of sericulture by inaugurating the rearing shed at Magizhanjeri village on Saturday.

Mr. Natarajan said that the district administration imparts training and offers assistance to the farmers in cultivating mulberry plants in the wet lands, and this has proved a big hit.

The silk worms feed on mulberry plants. The State government on its part has come forward to provide a subsidy of Rs. 1 lakh for 1,500 square feet for rearing silk worms and Rs. 75,000 for 1,000 square feet. Moreover, the government provides Rs. 6,750 as subsidy for mulberry cultivation and Rs. 40,000 for the procurement of equipment.

The government also provides training to the sericulture farmers for five days at Hosur, Mr. Natarajan said.

From the third month of mulberry plantation, a farmer can earn nearly Rs. 20,000 a month from the cocoon harvesting.

To build the silkworm rearing shed, the banks have provided loans to the tune of Rs. 1.5 lakh to 10 farmers from Magizhanjeri, Maruthuvakudi, Anniyur and Kollapuram.

Ravisankar, Assistant General Manager, NABARD, Asokan, panchayat president, Sadaiyappa Vinayagamoorthy, project officer, Mahalir Thittam, S. Vijayakumar, manager, State Bank of India, and V.Gopalsamy, assistant inspector, sericulture department, participated.

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