Staff Reporter

KOZHIKODE: Projects are in the process of being finalised to cultivate paddy in arid areas and at the same time, cultivating vegetables and lentils thereby increasing farm productivity in the district.

Principal Agriculture Officer M.S. Reji Kumar informed that the proposal is to make cultivable an extent of 150 hectares of arid land cultivable for paddy. A sum of Rs.5,000 a hectare would be provided. Vegetables and lentils would be grown in as much as 50 hectares, and a sum of Rs.2,500 paid for a hectare.

Paddy in fallow fields

A proposal is also on under the Food Security Programme to grow rice in paddy fields that have been left fallow in the district, Mr. Reji Kumar added.

The programme was being implemented with assistance of agricultural university, agriculture department and local self-government bodies and a sum of Rs.500 a hectare would be paid.

Vegetable villages

Sanction has been accorded to start 41 vegetable villages under the ‘1000 vegetable village’ initiative. A sum of Rs.2.5 lakh would be disbursed for the purpose.

The setting up of school and household gardens in the district have also been envisaged under the project, it was added. A sum of Rs.290.25 lakh has been earmarked under a Central–sponsored scheme for combating bud rot in coconut, yellowing leaf disease in areca palms and for growing organic banana, it was added.