Horticulture can be a bone for the state like Arunachal- Experts

Naharlagun

Horticulture can be a bone for the state like Arunachal Pradesh said Central Institute for Subtropical Horticulture (CISH) Director Dr. Shailendra Rajan.

Dr. Shailendra who carried his visit to the Guava garden established by a progressive farmer Likha Maj at Yachuli in Lower Subansiri along with Yachuli ADC J.T Toko Obi, Ziro Horticulture Development Officer Taso Yalu, firm ‘AGUN’ Director A. K. Saha and few local farmers of Yachuli area.

While talking to the media Dr. Shailndra said that there is a vast scope for economic sustainability and every scope for cultivation of Horticulture crop which would be source of income to the upcoming farmers unlike those who are already been engaged in other allied sectors. More over the climate condition and other requirement of the state and  region is also suitable for the cultivation of guava and through the farmers can get good income generation for their family needs.

He said Lucknow is not only known for excellent mangoes but also for mouth-watering high quality guava fruits. Lucknow-49, country wide ruling guava variety has origin from the state capital. In India, guava is an introduced crop from South America and in fact Uttar Pradesh played a major role in establishing guava industry of the country.

High return from guava cultivation attracted organizations for establishing guava industry in North eastern region for the benefit of farming communities comprising mostly of tribal population. Further, of the region, which is mostly tribal and do not have access to genuine planting material of new high yielding guava varieties as well as improved production technology. Guava cultivation in Arunanchal Pradesh was not a commercial venture due to lack of genuine planting material and technology know how of cultivation. With the serious efforts of AGUN and ICAR-CISH one lakh guava grafts have been planted in Yachuli and nearby areas.

The guava plantation and awareness campaign was a collaborative initiative between ICAR-Central Institute for Sub-Tropical Horticulture (CISH) and AGUN, which was formed by the progressive farmer Likha Maj in 2002 to pioneer state’s horticulture movement. Guava cultivation has become a passion for Maj who turned to “guava tycoon” from “rubber  tycoon” with the support of his wife Likha Aja, Lollen. Apart from ICAR-CISH support for grafts, he has donated thousands of grafts to locals worth emulating for speedy progress of the state people.

Making bulk grafted planting material available at remote place like Naharlagun from Lucknow is not an easy job because there is lot of graft mortality if transported through truck from distant parts of the country Therefore, AGUN and CISH decided to establish a model nursery at Naharlagun which can produce low cost quality planting material.

Progressive farmer Likha Maj while said that he have been doing in such activities for last more than fifteen years and have been involved in production of large cardamom and other plantation activities. The guava have a high scope and have planted more than 1 lakh saplings and distributed more than 1 lakh saplings to the  local needy farmers free of coast. He assured to establish a guava processing unit at Yachuli at an estimated cost of 200 crore but need subsidy and help from the state government like providing of power supply, approach road, supply of water supply and land free of extra tak on land.

He said that he have also disclosed his view at the recent programme held at the Conclave at AP Assembly and wanted that the state government support him for such development in horticulture  sector.

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