TAMIL NADU

Expedite planting of cashew saplings in Pachamalai, Collector tells forest officials

INSPECTION: K. Nanda Kishore, Tiruchi Collector, inspecting a cashew sapling at Top Sengattupatti on Wednesday.

INSPECTION: K. Nanda Kishore, Tiruchi Collector, inspecting a cashew sapling at Top Sengattupatti on Wednesday.  

Staff Reporter

TIRUCHI: Collector K. Nanda Kishore on Wednesday directed Forest Department officials to expedite the work of planting cashew saplings in villages in Pachamalai to check soil erosion in the area.

Local tribals in and around Top Sengattupatti, who normally raised tapioca, were hard hit owing to soil erosion and the district administration, to check the problems arising out of erosion during monsoon, advised cultivation of cashew as an alternative cash crop in the area.

Out of the savings under the Jawahar Rozgar Yojana scheme, the district administration earlier sanctioned Rs.3.60 lakhs for raising cashew saplings in an extent of 700 acres. The department had so far spent Rs.2.20 lakhs for planting 43,650 saplings in 532 acres in 22 villages in the area by motivating and benefiting women members of the SHGs and the farmers, together numbering 562.

The Collector, who visited the village, inspected the cashew plants, which were a few months old. Based on the overwhelming response from the tribal farmers to switch over to an alternative cropping strategy, he advised the officials to expedite the complete implementation of the programme, so that an additional 200 acres could be brought under cashew cultivation utilising the balance of Rs.1.40 lakhs.

The Collector inspected the work on the restoration of a road on the Top Sengattupatti-Thonur sector, which was damaged owing to soil erosion at Thannerpallam. At Ramanathapuram, he directed the officials to restore the road by month-end.

He also asked Highways Department officials to expedite the work of providing road facility on the Koppampatti - Kancherimalai sector for which Rs.41 lakhs had been allotted.

Mr. Kishore, who listened to people's grievances at Kamboor, sanctioned a sewing machine, from the Collector's Discretionary Funds, to each of six women.

At Oduvampattipudur, Mr. Kishore sanctioned a fair price shop at an expenditure of Rs. one lakh and assessed the functioning of the two women SHGs. Officials who were present, said a percolation pond at an expenditure of Rs. 4.20 lakhs has been set up in the village.

The Project Officer, District Rural Development Agency, M. Manohara Singh, the District Forest Officer, K. V. Giridhar and the Divisional Engineer, Highways Department, R.V. Swami, were among those who accompanied the Collector.

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