R. Vimal Kumar
Tirupur: The Department of Horticulture is all set to implement the National Mission on Medicinal Plants (NMMP) in the newly-formed Tirupur district to promote medicinal plant cultivation on a commercial basis for the first time.
During this financial year, a total of 35 hectares spread equally over seven blocks will be brought under various medicinal plants at an outlay of Rs. 24.06 lakh allocated from the corpus created under the Mission.
“The amount will be extended to the beneficiary farmers as subsidy to raise nurseries, cultivation and management support. Of this, subsidy will be back-ended/ credit-linked for nursery and cultivation components,” P. Santhanakrishnan, Assistant Director of Horticulture, told The Hindu.
The management support activities include preparation of plans, monitoring and administrative expenses.
The pattern of subsidy has been graded as per the guidelines stipulated under the Mission depending on the conservation status of the medicinal plants.
Subsidy assistance will be 75 percent in the case of 16 highly-endangered species listed in the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species such as Agar, Vatsnabh, Chandan and Guggal, among others.
It will be 50 percent in the case of 32 plants whose sources of supply are critically declining or having long gestation period, and 20 percent subsidy assistance for other 45 medicinal plants listed by Department of Ayush (Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homeopathy) under Union Ministry of Health.
“We will give preference to cluster-based approach over individual-centric cultivation to reap optimum benefits out of the scheme,” Mr. Santhanakrishnan said.
Interested farmers and growers associations could contact the horticulture officials here for more details on the scheme and to avail themselves of subsidy assistance at the earliest (Tel No: 94421-69652).