Tripura registers shortfall in paddy cultivation due to low rainfall
Farmers in Tripura could plant 1,44,120 hectare land out of 1.48 lakh hectare paddy field in the state this year owing to low rainfall
Paddy crops could not be cultivated in nearly 4,000 hectare cultivable land in Tripura in the Aman crop cycle this year due to low rainfall, officials in the state agriculture department said on Wednesday.
Agriculture secretary Apurba Roy said the state registered 17 percent less rainfall than previous years, which had a “little bit” influence on the Aman crop.
Aman, which is a paddy crop cycle like Aaush, Boro or Ravi, is the next paddy crop in the state.
Out of 1.48 lakh hectare paddy field in the state, farmers could plant 1,44,120 hectare this year owing to low rainfall.
Agriculture minister Pranajit Singha Roy said earlier in August this year that the state had less rainfall before the previous ‘aus’ paddy crop cycle as well, owing to which 25,000 hectare paddy land could not be planted. It was apprehended the dearth in paddy plantation faced a shortage of over 59,000 MT foodgrain.
While the government earlier said it aimed to overcome the shortfall with Integrated Crop Management, the department has now reiterated the plan and said it has undertaken a massive conversion drive of conventional paddy cultivation to integrated method and use it to boost production and overcome shortfall apprehensions.
Since the previous Left Front government, Tripura has been working to boost paddy production with innovative techniques like System of Rice Intensification (SRI).
Farmers have conventionally used Integrated Crop Management as well though the department has recently made a push to convert nearly 80,000 hectare out of 1.48 lakh hectare paddy fields to the integrated method, the officials said.
Though only 3 percent of the cultivable paddy fields were not planted in the ‘Aman’ crop cycle, estimates suggest nearly 4,000 MT foodgrain might be short, which the department feels can be easily overcome with high yielding varieties of seeds, integrated management and intensive cash and agricultural input assistance to farmers.
According to records, around 26 percent of the state’s land area is covered by cultivable land used to grow paddy, vegetables and other agricultural products.
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