TIRUCHY: With Cauvery having a copious flow and a promising IMD prediction for monsoon, the Agriculture department through a special project has planned to increase 12,000 hectares of fallow land to cultivatable land. Officials stated that increasing the agricultural lands will also increase the overall food grain cultivation in the district.
As all irrigation sources are having ample water, the agriculture department increased the overall food grain cultivation to 125 lakh metric tons as target for 2019 -20. During the review meeting in Madurai, the agriculture department planned initiatives to engage more farmers in agricultural works.
The strategies include improving paddy, millets, pulses fields, converting fallow lands into cultivable lands and the distribution of quality seeds. The target for Tiruchy was also increased from 4.1 lakh metric tons to 4.5 lakhs metric tons this year.
Speaking to TNIE, Santhana Krishnan, Joint director of agriculture, said, “Based on the strategies discussed in the review meeting, we have planned to increase 1.13 lakh hectares of agriculture land to 1.15 lakhs hectares by converting more than 12,000 hectares of fallow land in Manapparai, Marungapuri, Vaiyampatti, Musiri and Thottiam to cultivatable land.”
He added that with the help of MGNREGA and local agricultural workers, the agriculture department has been preparing fallow lands for cultivation. This is expected to be completed by the end of 2019.
Speaking about the process, a senior agricultural official stated that thousands of hectares are fallow in Manapparai, Marungapuri and Vaiyampatti due to irrigation problems. But now it is possible to prepare the lands for agricultural use with better irrigation facilities.
“Proper awareness programs are carried out by the Agri-department to encourage land owners to engage their lands in agricultural works,” the official added.