TIRUVANANTHAPURAM : Taking a leaf out of the successful implementation of the grama sabhas in the state, the Agriculture Department has decided to hold ward-level ‘farmers’ sabhas’ in every panchayats ensuring participation of all the farmers in the state. The department also decided to hold Njattuvela markets during the period of Thiruvathira Njattuvela’, which is believed to be the lifeline of the traditional agriculture sector and is considered ideal for starting farming activities in the state.
Agriculture Minister V S Sunilkumar said the department will hold two-week long farmers’ sabhas in the month of July involving 10 lakh agriculturists in the state. The Njattuvela markets organised during this period will provide planting materials and other farming tools and accessories to the farmers. Speaking at a Vision 2018 workshop organised by the department in Thiruvananthapuram in which all the Krishi officers took part, he said in order to enhance the efficiency of the services rendered by the department, a digital action force in the state will be formed and it will streamline the office works with the help of information technology and a mobile app named ‘Telegram’ for facilitating the interaction of agriculture officers.
A state-level coordination of Plant Health Clinic and Agro Service Centre will be done under the aegis of block-level assistant directors to form a common guideline for the projects. The department will also hold planting of sapling and its upkeep on World Environment Day of June 5. All the Krishi Bhavans have been directed to form an action plan for the next three years and prepare a repository of local bio diversity.
The farmers are told to apply the inorganic fertilisers in farm lands and use pesticides only as per the instruction of agriculture officers. The Minister also said around 94 per cent of the vegetables available in the state are safe-to-eat as test results confirmed it.
The intervention of the Agriculture Department has helped in reducing the pesticide residue in vegetables in the state, he said. The workshop also provided a slew of instructions to popularise the special farming project launched in the tribal areas in the state apart from crop insurance and good farming practices.
The officers who took part in the workshop were also given training on framing guidelines for project execution, fund utilisation and audit, etc.