Central research team to assess pest attack loss

Berhampur
5 Nov 2017

A team of experts from the National Rice Research Institute (NRRI), Cuttack, is scheduled to review and assess the damage caused to crops because of pest attack in Ganjam district. As Ganjam is one of the worst-affected districts due to massive pest attack in the state, experts of the Orissa University of Agriculture and Technology (OUAT) have already reviewed the crop loss on Friday, officials said. They said crops on around 19,904 hectares of land were destroyed due to the insect attack. Crops on 13,009 hectares area were destroyed by Brown Plant Hopper (BPH). Paddy was cultivated on 2.16 lakh hectares area in the district.
The NRRI team will soon visit the fields to assess the damage, said Deputy Director of Agriculture (DDA), Ganjam, Manoj Behera. They are likely to study the pesticides used by the farmers to control the pest menace, while the extent of damage due to pest attack would be known after getting reports from all blocks, he said. Meanwhile, the state government is contemplating sending the pesticides used by the farmers for laboratory test to the Central Insecticides Laboratory (CIL), Faridabad, to ascertain their quality, officials said. Several farmers complained that the pesticides, which they used, were not effective.
A six-member expert team, led by Bhagaban Patra, professor in entomology department of OUAT, visited different blocks in the district and interacted with the farmers about the use of pesticides. "We'll submit our report to the government soon with some recommendations," said Patra after visiting the affected areas of Aska, Sorada, Bhanjanagar and Hinjili blocks. Farmers in different areas staged demonstrations, displaying their damaged plants. They demanded compensation for the crop loss. Many farmers said they expected a bumper crop this year due to favourable climate, but all hopes were shattered due to the pest attack.