In the light of widespread Mahali infestation reported in the district during this monsoon, a special package for areca nut farmers to off-set their loses would be considered, Agriculture Minister K. P. Mohanan has said.

The assessment of losses prepared on the basis of reports furnished from Agriculture offices in the district would be presented at the State Cabinet meeting scheduled on Wednesday, Mr. Mohanan said. The Minister was speaking at the inauguration of the ‘Seed Vehicle’ programme, a vegetable development campaign project, organised jointly by the State Agriculture and Education departments at the S. A. T. High School in Manjeswaram on Tuesday.

The excess rainfall recorded in the State this season has led to higher cases of ‘Mahali’ and bud rot diseases for areca nut and coconut plants respectively, he said.

As part of the promotion of vegetable cultivation in school premises, the government has distributed 50 lakh seed kits worth Rs. 20 each across the schools in the State. Around 1.50 lakh seed kits of various plants, processed by the State seed development authority and the State vegetable food promotion council, have been earmarked for Kasaragod alone, he said.

‘Seed Vehicle’ programme, a vegetable development campaign project, inaugurated at Manjeswaram