Potato sown only in 25 p.c. of target area

Staff Correspondent

HASSAN: At a monthly review meeting of the Hassan Zilla Panchayat here on Tuesday, Deputy Director of Horticulture Department Nagaraj told the members that this year farmers had sown potato only in 25 per cent of the target area (potato is grown in 50,000 hectares) in the district.

However, there have been no cases of blight disease this year.

Some plants had withered as there was no rain after the application of complex fertilizer to the crop.

The withering of plants was not due to blight disease, he said.

The members expressed concern over the reduced area under potato which was a major crop of the district. They also feared an attack of blight.

Panchayat president Lokanath advised agriculture and horticulture officers to provide work to farmers and agriculture workers under the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme and advised the implementing officers to conduct workshops for officers and enlighten them on how the scheme worked.

Mr. Lokanath directed the officers to involve elected representatives while launching development work in their constituencies and while distributing benefits under various schemes.

Mr. Lokanath said there was enough stock of complex fertilizers as well as paddy and ragi seeds.

District Health Officer Nagaraja Rao told the meeting that under a blindness eradication programme, surgery was performed on 1,646 people to remove cataract. As many as 15,444 children were given vaccination between January and May this year.

The department had tested 2,555 sputum samples that confirmed tuberculosis in 326 people and provided treatment to them. As many as 58,233 blood samples were tested for malaria and 11 malaria cases detected.