TODAY -
IPM tech enriches villagers
Source: Hueiyen News Service

Imphal, April 01 2009: A family living hand to mouth before the village was turn out into a Model Agriculture Village and adopting Integrated Pest Management (IPM) method of farming have now feel fear of getting monetary demand from the underground outfits in the troubled torn Manipur.

Ishikha, a village with only 52 homesteads in a remote corner of Imphal east has turned out to be a village with no poor people.

Even though not a single vehicle was seen in the village three year back, today many motorcycles and some four-wheeler vehicles could be seen parked in the village.

Memcha Devi, a housewife of 60 year of age said that there have been a remarkable change in the living condition of her family of one son and four daughters in the last three years.

During an interaction with some media persons who visited the village today, she revealed that the family has not worried of maintaining the family.

"I come here in this village with my husband 30 year back to earn livelihood with nothing in hand except the clothing in the back and till three year back working hard to earn daily bread with no field of our own.

We work all the year round.

Cultivate rice to four acres of land tenant from other.

The annual income could not even feed my children leaving behind their going to school," Memcha said.

"It was three year I remember, for the first time in my life I could store enough rice for consumption for a year and earned extra income with potato farming in the field during the off-season," she added.

She went on to say that within the three year period, I had arranged marriage of two of my daughters and the only son without any financial burden with the extra income that earn with potato cultivation.

Only two daughters are left to perform their marriage which Memcha wanted to perform within the next two year if crops are not failed.

She estimated extra income of more than Rs 30,000 per acres of field.

Actually she did not want to disclose the exact income her family could earn hinting of militants coming to extort money, an indication of how high the incidents of extortion of people's properties by militants in the state.

Like the family of Memcha, other in the village also remarkably improve their living conditions as the many houses which was with thatch roof had converted with GI-sheet.

Villager youths are seen with motorcycle and even some of them with four wheelers like Van and other vehicles which can generate income with taxi service.

Experts of the IPM team campaigning for the adoption of Integrate Pest Management method of cultivation to the farmers across the state by setting up Model Agriculture Village arrived at the village three year back in 2006 .

IPM experts comprising of the agricultural scientists of the Central Agricultural University, CAU, Imphal and experts of the state Agriculture Department joining hand with an Go, Society for People Advancement, Manipur (SPAM), IPM method of cultivation was introduced to the farmers of the village.

From the very first trial of the method, the yields of the crops (both in Rabi as well as Khariff season) enhanced double times their original production.

Since then, with full confidence, the farmers grow rice in khariff season as main crop and potato during the rabi crop season.

Though, the potato yield this year reduced somewhat to that of past two years, still farmers could yet good income of not less than Rs 25,000 per acre.

Deputy Director (Soil Chemist) of the state agriculture department, Ph Rajendro who is leading the IPM said that the yields have been decreased due to no rain during when the potato plants needed and there were no irrigation facilities in the area.

However, over all yield estimated at 60 matric tones from 45 acres of field cultivating potato in the village.

This targeted yield is against last year production achievement of 75 matric tones of potato from the same acres of the fields.

Unable to treat the soils of the field due to late season at the time of plantation and unexpected invasion by insects and diseases which IPM team tried its best to control not affect in the yield are other factors faced which affected to the yields, Rajendro who also arrived at the field to check the yield of the potato commented.

Except Mustard oil seed this year, other rabi crops could not produced upto the targeted yields, he added.


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