CPI (M) concerned over scab outbreak, sale of spurious pesticides in South Kashmir

SRINAGAR: Expressing serious concern over the outbreak of scab disease in apple orchards in South Kashmir and sub-standard pesticides sold in market, the CPI (M) senior leader Ghulam Nabi Malik has invited the attention of the state government to address the problem faced by the farmers and orchardists without any delay by ordering a general survey of the horticulture sector in valley.
In its party statement, Malik who is also general secretary of Jammu and Kashmir Kisan Tehreek (JKKT) observed that farmers and orchardists are already suffering losses due to weather vagaries and now different diseases are taking toll on crops, added with a dearth of standard pesticides and fungicides in the market.
Malik said that the government should take notice of the problems being faced by the farmers and orchardists of Kashmir and chalk out a proper and comprehensive plan to address these problems at the earliest.
“The non-availability of prescribed pesticides and fungicides in the market has created serious problems for the farmers and orchardists particularly in South Kashmir,” he said.
Malik asserted that despite the fact that horticulture is the backbone of rural economy in J&K and more so in Kashmir valley; the state has not taken the fruit industry seriously and has not provided any incentives and support system to the fruit growers who are keeping the industry alive by their own efforts.
He said that in its various recommendations, the Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agriculture Science and Technology (SKUAST) Kashmir had prescribed various fungicides but unfortunately these prescribed fungicides are not available to farmers in the market. “There is sheer negligence on part of the administration, regarding the availability of quality fertilizers and various agro-chemicals; urgently required by the orchardists of the Kashmir, as the new fruit season has already begun,” Malik said.