Maharashtra to distribute indigenous seeds among farmers
To promote organic farming and curb uncontrolled use of pesticides, Maharashtra government will distribute seeds of indigenous cotton varieties for cultivation to farmers in suicide-prone Yavatmal district on June 18.
The project, being undertaken jointly with Central Institute for Cotton Research and P K agriculture University will cover 100 tribal farmers.
"The seeds are of indigenous origin and would ensure better yields with a less cost. A seed bank will also soon be developed and seeds would be made available to farmers in the open market at low cost," Kishor Tiwari Chairman of Vasantrao Naik Sethi Swalamban Mission, said.
The mission is being formed by Maharashtra government to address agrarian issues.
He said the scheme would be implemented in 14 districts spread across Vidarbha and Marathwada in a phased manner as a flagship programme of Maharashtra government.
Project Director and Divisional Agriculture Officer Rahul Satpute said, "As part of on an going campaign to stop farmers suicides, tribals who are the worst-hit victims of rain sensitive crops have come forward to opt for a desi solution by replacing Bt cotton seeds." "Seeds produced by tribals would be collected by agriculture department and later would be sold in the local market so that they get a good price," he said.