JAIPUR: In a novel bid to highlight the crisis being created by locusts in western Rajasthan, a BJP MLA entered the state Assembly carrying a basket full of locusts on Friday.
Bihari Lal, the MLA from Nokha in Bikaner district asked the Gehlot government to expedite the process of giving compensation to farmers who have suffered huge losses in the insect attack.
Bikaner is one of the eleven districts of Rajasthan which is facing the worst locust attack after 26 years.
The MLA remarked to reporters in the assembly: "The seriousness of the government is visible in addressing the issue of locust attack in western Rajasthan that has damaged crops on lakhs of hectares of land. Instead of taking the issue very seriously, the government is focused on the Citizenship Amendment Act. Farmers have suffered huge losses due to the locust attack and the government should expedite the compensation distribution process."
Countless swarms of locusts from Pakistan have caused extensive damage to crops, wreaking havoc for farmers in western Rajasthan.
In what is being called the longest and worst attack of red locusts in the last 60 years, Rabi crop has been damaged in an estimated area of at least 3.7 lakh hectares across Rajasthan.
Locusts are a collection of certain species of short-horned grasshoppers that have a swarming phase wherein they can cause massive destruction to crops and pastures.
Locusts eat leaves, flowers,fruits, seeds, bark and also destroy plants by their sheer weight as they descend in massive numbers.
With countless farmers now helping officials, the Centre and state government have sprayed insecticides in over 3 lakh hectares of land.
However, despite the large scale devastation, affected farmers are yet to be adequately compensated.