Lockdown adversely affects Dhakuakhana vegetable growers
LAKHIMPUR: Due to the adverse impact of the lockdown initiated to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, the vegetables growers of Lakhimpur district have to suffer losses. The vegetable growers of Dhakuakhana especially have been adversely affected.
These vegetable growers could not supply their produce on time as markets were closed and vehicles stopped plying since the first phase lockdown for 21 days was declared. As a result of it, cucumber, tomato, cornered gourd, bitter gourd and many other seasonal vegetables got damaged in the gardens. Moreover, the vegetable growers could not take proper care of the vegetable gardens on time by removing the harmful grass and applying insecticides to kill the harmful insects. As a consequence, the harmful insects and worms have been damaging the rest of the vegetables in the gardens from one end to other. The crisis at present has led the vegetable growers to an uncertain future.
Regarding the issue, three unemployed youths under the Dhakuakhana subdivision -Mahesh Doley of Bahir Kopsan Goan, Naba Kumar Kutum of Amlakhi Kutum Gaon and Chitta Kumar Doley of Bandena Gaon said that they had dreamt of becoming self-dependent by cultivating vegetables on awide scale.
“For this purpose, we took a plot of 16 bigha land at Amlakhi Kutum Gaon at the rate of Rs. 4,000 per bigha in a year. Then we cultivated cornered gourd, lady’s finger, bitter gourd, pumpkin, tomato, coriander and many other kinds of vegetables. A large number of vegetables were spoilt in our farm as we could not take proper care by supplying water, applying judicious amount of fertilizers and insecticides on time. To make matters worse, insects and worms also damaged the rest of the vegetables,” they said.
They further added that they took loans from SHGs to add with their capital in order to cultivate the vegetables. At present, profit from their cultivation is a distant dream for them as they have lost their deposited money due to the unexpected crisis. Most of the vegetable growers of Dhakuakhana subdivision are facing the same fate. In this regard, the affected farmers have urged the Agriculture Department to extend them a helping hand.