CHERTHALA: Agriculture Minister V S Sunil Kumar has said the government will not allow the padasekhara samithis to carry out only fish farming in the pokkali paddy lands in the State. He was speaking after inaugurating the Ponnamveli creek cleaning project at the Pattanakkad block panchayat hall near here on Monday.
The project is being implemented as part of the removal of waterlogging in around 100 hectares in ward five of the panchayat. The minister said some of the people with vested interests under the padasekhara samithis are carrying out only fish farming in pokkali farmlands. Paddy and fish farming should be done in the pokkali lands at proper intervals, he said.
The minister said the aid for the loss in paddy cultivation was hiked to Rs 35,000 per hectare. The government has been distributing the price of procured paddy in a time-bound manner and 90 per cent of the amount has been distributed this season. From next year, the amount will be given to farmers immediately after the procurement. Banks, Agriculture and Civil Supplies departments will jointly distribute the amount, he said.
The government has earmarked Rs 34 crore for paddy cultivation in the budget. Office system will be implemented for Kole Land Development Agency for spreading pokkali farming in the State. The aim of the government is to make the state barren-land free in two years, the minister said.
Civil Supplies Minister P Thilothaman presided over the function. He said Rs 1.05 crore was allotted by Nabard for the renovation of the Ponnamveli creek.