Green fodder can be grown on river banks and adjacent low-lying areas in summer: MLA

Published - December 18, 2023 09:54 pm IST - MANGALURU

U. Rajesh Naik, Bantwal MLA, speaking at an interaction programme with the media at the Press Club in Mangaluru on Monday.

U. Rajesh Naik, Bantwal MLA, speaking at an interaction programme with the media at the Press Club in Mangaluru on Monday. | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

Bantwal MLA and progressive farmer Rajesh U. Naik on Monday suggested that river banks and low-lying areas abutting rivers in the district can be utilised to grow green fodder during non-monsoon season to address fodder shortage in Dakshina Kannada district.

Speaking as the honorary guest at the Mangaluru Press Club here, Mr. Naik said growing jowar and such other green fodder would also help maintaining groundwater level in the surrounding areas besides encouraging dairy farmers to rear more cattle.

Engaged in innovating farming at his Oddur Farms in Bantwal taluk, Mr. Naik said he has adopted a similar method in the farm to grow fodder in fallow lands. Even at the government-owned Koila Farm, a similar experiment was being made while the district administration was surveying river bank lands for the purpose.

Mr. Naik said when he went for farming on the barren lands at Oddur Farms, many people discouraged him. However, the farm was now brimming with greenery with different crops even as a tank on two-acres land was always filled with 12 ft water. This has increased the groundwater table in the surrounding areas, the MLA said. He urged the younger generation to work hard for two months in farming and grow food that would be sufficient for the next eight months.

Mr. Naik also noted that he was producing about 700 kg CNG every day out of 15 tonnes of wet waste received from Bantwal Town Municipal Council at his farm. He was also getting 15 kg manure from the CNG unit set up on 60 cents of land with an investment of ₹4 crore. He was prepared to set up one more unit if neighbouring gram panchayats provide wet waste.

Senior journalist Balakrishna Gatti, who inaugurated the dialogue, said marshy lands abutting railway lines, roads, and other areas could be used to grow different crops suitable for such lands. Press Club president P.B. Harish Rai, Dakshina Kannada Working Journalists’ Association president Srinivas Nayak Indaje, Patrika Bhavana Trust president R. Ramakrishna, and others were present.

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