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  • Pakistan

    South Asia

    radioactive wastes: A Pakistani senator recently accused the country's nuclear authorities of dumping radioactive waste near a village in the Punjab province causing cancer, miscarriages, and

  • Erratic weather hits Bangladesh`s <i>boro</i> rice

    Erratic weather hits Bangladesh's boro rice

    the boro rice crop in three low-lying northeastern districts of Bangladesh has been hit hard due to erratic weather conditions, which has necessitated change in sowing pattern. The crop, grown

  • Fertiliser crisis dashes hopes for good crops in southern dists

    Short supply of fertiliser is affecting cultivation of Irri-Boro and rabi crops in Sidr affected 11 district in Barisal region. Despite constraints and financial hardship, farmers in the region are making all out efforts to recover the losses caused by Sidr but their hopes are being dashed by fertiliser crisis. Sources at fertiliser monitoring cell and Barisal regional office of Agriculture Extension Department (AED) said only 6,290 tonnes of TSP and urea were distributed among dealers and 17,500 tons were in stock till Thursday last against the demand for 40,200 tonnes in the region.

  • More 25,000 hectares under Boro in Sylhet

    About 25,000 hectares are turning into double-crop lands in Sylhet district this year with cultivation of Irri-Boro in the current season for the first time. Loss of Amon paddy this year compelled farmers to cultivate Irri-Boro on the vast lands left fallow earlier. Farmers in large number in Sylhet Sadar, Golapganj, Beanibazar, Kanaighat, Zakiganj and Jaintapur upazilas are bringing the lands under paddy cultivation to recoup crop loss due to floods.

  • Wheat farming expands in Faridpur

    FARMERS in Faridpur are getting interested in wheat cultivation due to its increasing demand, high price and favourable weather. The land for wheat farming in the district has been increased significantly over the past few years. According to the Department of Agricultural Extension in Faridpur, 25,545 hectares of land have been brought under wheat cultivation this season while the figure was 20,310 hectares in the previous year. The wheat production might be about 53 thousand tonnes this season which was about 34 thousand tonnes in the previous season. In 1999-2000 season, 12,904 hectares of land were brought under wheat cultivation in the district and the production was 24,634 tonnes, according to the regional statistical office. DAE officials said in the current season cold weather and rain made a good contribution to the expected production which could increase by 5 to 10 per cent. The officials said some 10 years back the cultivation of wheat was not on a large scale in the district. In the winter, farmers used to remain satisfied with vegetables' cultivation as well as other rabi crops. A vast tract of land remained fallow. In course of time, the scenario has been changed. Dr Sirajul Islam, scientific officer of On Firm Research Division of the Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute in Faridpur, said in the last few years the land under wheat cultivation had got almost double. He attributed the increase of land to rising demand of flour in the domestic market. He also added that in the past years agriculture researchers had invented some high yielding varieties of wheat, which had become very popular to the farmers. The varieties are Sonali, Akbori, Bolaka, Waghrany, Protiva, Sourav, Shotabdi, Behari Kalyan etc. Old local varieties like Sona Digha, Kanchon, Elyas etc can no longer attract farmers with their low productivity, Dr Sirajul Islam said. Oasiul Islam, deputy director of the Faridpur DAE, said his department had tried heart and soul to ensure proper supply of fertiliser, seeds and technological support. Abdul Kuddus, a farmer of village Parchar at Machchar union in the district headquarters, said he was expecting a good harvest of wheat in the current season because of favourable weather. He also added that farmers in the area got sufficient quantity of fertiliser. The farmers said they had taken to wheat farming due to its growing demand and increasing price in the market. Besides, cultivation of wheat is very easy in comparison with many seasonal crops. In the market wheat is now selling at Tk 1,100 to 1,200 per mound which was only Tk 700 to 800 in the previous year.

  • India

    India bails out small farmers in pre-election budget

    India's Congress-led government announced on Friday a 15 billion dollars loan bailout for small farmers in a populist pre-election budget targeting the party's traditional poor rural supporters. Finance minister Palaniappan Chidambaram, releasing the budget for the year starting April 1 as India's blistering economic growth has begun to slow, announced a 600 billion rupees ($15.05b) relief plan. Some 30 million indebted farmers' loans would be fully waived and another 10 million would receive aid, said Chidambaram, who presented the budget ahead of nine state elections slated this year followed by national polls in early 2009. He pledged to wrestle down the fiscal deficit and tame inflation. But the lack of any big corporate incentives along with the debt giveaway dismayed the stock market which tumbled nearly 1.4 per cent.

  • Paddy farming faces setback as Pabna farmers cry for rain

    IRRI-boro paddy cultivation in Pabna is facing a setback because of a drought-like situation for lack of rain. The farmers are now crying for rain.

  • Farmers grow chickpea on fallow Barind land

    FARMERS in the Barind area are now using fallow land to cultivate chickpea. The high Barind land used to remain fallow after aman harvest.

  • Sri Lanka

    Analog forestry mimics a forest to create an economically productive and ecologically diverse landscape

    Analog forestry mimics a forest to create an economically productive and ecologically diverse landscape

    In Sri Lanka, organic farmers draw inspiration from endemic practices such as home gardens or analog forestry, and have also adapted ‘imported’ ideas, such as zero-budget farming from India.

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