Mangaluru

Soil testing labs on wheels for entire State

Agriculture Minister B.C. Patil said on Monday that his department has planned to provide soil testing laboratories on wheels to all Raita Samparka Kendras in the State. Speaking after releasing to the market “Kaarla Kaje” brand of boiled rice marketed by Parampara Multipurpose Cooperative Society Ltd. at Karkala, Udupi district, the Minister said that 20 such mobile laboratories named “Krishi Sanjeevini” have been given to as many kendras in Koppal district now on a trial basis. If the “laboratory to land” concept is to be implemented covering all kendras in the State, 519 more vehicles will have to be purchased. Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa has, in principle, agreed to sanction funds to purchase the vehicles. The Finance Department will have to approve of the proposal. He said that the mobile laboratory has a common toll free number, which is 155313, for the State. Farmers will have to call this number to get services on their doorsteps. Each vehicle has an agriculture graduate to guide farmers with the kind of nutrients their plots need to use for the type of soil they have. The farm graduate will also guide farmers on the treatment required for standing crops in case of disease.

The Minister said that the State government has also written to the Union government to sanction one stationary permanent soil testing laboratory in each gram panchayat. Mr. Patil said that the department has also introduced “Swabhimani Raitha” cards for farmers, and 1.5 lakh cards have been distributed in Koppal district. This will be extended to the rest of the State to cover 70 lakh farmers. The card will have all details of the farmers, including their RTC and bank details. It is to do away with the need for them to carry multiple identification documents while going to banks for transactions.

The Minister said that his department has been imparting training to farmers through the Central Food Technological Research Institute (CFTRI) in Mysuru in food processing and marketing since the last month. It has been planned to provide training to 500 farmers by this March. Each batch of 50 farmers are being trained for six days. They are trained in food processing for four days and marketing in two days.

He also launched the marketing of seeds of Karkala “Bili bende” (lady’s finger) on the occasion.

Karkala MLA V. Sunil Kumar was present.

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Printable version | Mar 5, 2021 7:15:58 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Mangalore/soil-testing-labs-on-wheels-for-entire-state/article33604391.ece

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