Madurai

Summer ploughing taken up free of cost for marginal farmers

Free ploughing of farmlands of marginal farmers under way in Virudhunagar.  

Even as the Department of Agriculture has appealed farmers to go for summer ploughing, Tractor and Farm Equipments Ltd. (TAFE) has come forward to help marginal farmers plough their farmlands free of cost.

Free ploughing started on Wednesday and was expected to cover up to 15,000 acres of land in Virudhunagar district in the next two months before the northeast monsoon sets in, said Joint Director of Agriculture (Virudhunagar) S. Uthandaraman.

The private tractor manufacturer came up with the scheme to help farmers overcome the crisis induced by COVID-19 in 2020 and ploughed over 8,000 acres of land. Farmers owning up to two acres were eligible to avail themselves of the benefit under the scheme.

The company had issued a toll-free number 1800 4200100 through which farmers could register themselves under the scheme. They could also register through Uzhavan App and JFarm App. TAFE would send its tractors and bear the cost of fuel and driver expenses, Mr. Uthandaraman said.

Assistant Director of Agriculture (Rajapalayam) Subbiah said summer ploughing came with many benefits as it would loosen and aerate soil and reduce the effect of compaction. It would also increase moisture-holding capacity of soil and reduce erosion, thereby retaining nutrients. “Weeds will be removed without much expenditure and theycan be used as natural manure.”

Various types of pests living underground were eradicated due to direct exposure to sunlight and birds, he added.


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Printable version | Aug 3, 2021 3:14:41 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Madurai/summer-ploughing-taken-up-free-of-cost-for-marginal-farmers/article34718710.ece

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