Other States

Madhya Pradesh says locust invasion now ‘in control’

A fire brigade personnel sprays disinfectant to control the invasion of locusts in Damoh district, Madhya Pradesh.

A fire brigade personnel sprays disinfectant to control the invasion of locusts in Damoh district, Madhya Pradesh.   | Photo Credit: PTI

Avnish Chaturvedi, Deputy Director of the State’s Agriculture Department, says, “Larger swarms which cause significant damage have become smaller now. We will be in a better situation in the coming days if no new swarms enter the State.”

The Madhya Pradesh Agriculture Department on Wednesday said the locust invasion in the State had been reined in by pesticide spraying, aided by strong winds in patches that had splintered swarms into smaller groups and scattered them.

“The situation is much more in control now,” said Avnish Chaturvedi, Deputy Director in the Department. “Larger swarms which cause significant damage have become smaller now. We will be in a better situation in the coming days if no new swarms enter the State.”

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Swarms had entered the State on May 17 through the northeastern districts of Neemuch and Mandsaur from Rajasthan. There was another invasion from the northern districts of Morena and Sheopur. The short-horned grasshoppers travelled as far as Balaghat and Betul districts in the south, and Sidhi to the east, from where some flew into Uttar Pradesh with the wind direction.

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So far, pesticide operations had been conducted in 34 of the 52 districts, said Mr. Chaturvedi. “District officials and Central teams have conducted night spraying operations on at least 90 swarms. These include the same ones which travelled from one district to the other.”

Mr. Chaturvedi pointed out that swarms around the Sidhi and Satna areas had broken and become smaller due to storms.

Border districts, which had suffered the invasion first, were the worst affected, he said. “This is because swarms are bigger initially. We are yet to receive reports of crop damage. We anticipated damage in the Hoshangabad region, but adequate amount of pesticide had already been used in standing crops there by farmers,” added Mr. Chaturvedi.

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Printable version | Jul 5, 2020 5:15:04 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/madhya-pradesh-says-locust-invasion-now-in-control/article31740987.ece

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