Special Correspondent

SIVAGANGA: The brinjal crop has been infested with sucking pests and little leaf disease in Sivaganga district apparently due to heavy downpour in November.

It is being cultivated in about 140 hectares in the district.

More than 60 hectares have been brought under the brinjal cultivation during this year in areas including Sivaganga, Kalayar Kovil, Manamadurai and Tirupuvanam. The pest and disease attack were seen in Idayamelur, Saloor villages of Sivaganga block and Melakadu area of Kalayarkoil block.

S. Irulappan, Deputy Director of Horticulture, said heavy downpour in November could be the reason for the disease. Necessary measures had been suggested by block-level field staff to rectify the problems. But due to non-adoption of control measures in time by farmers and due to adverse weather conditions, the pest incidence had continued to occur.

Mr. Irulappan, who inspected the affected areas along with a team on Monday, said it was found that brinjal fields were infested with sucking pests, fruit borers and little leaf disease in about two hectares in Sivagangai block and eight hectares in Kalayarkoil block.

The above symptoms and incidence were discussed with the authorities of horticulture of Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, Coimbatore, and they had recommended a few corrective measures.

The affected portion of the plants with little leaf could be removed and insect vectors could be sprayed. Systematic insecticide might be applied in the plant affected with sucking pests.