Mumbai: In a unique initiative by Maharashtra police, as many as 95 farmers from villages in Maoist-affected and tribal districts of Gadchiroli have been enrolled wherein they have been taught modern farming techniques.
The initiative has been taken by the Gadchiroli police in order to ensure that the government benefits reach the sensitive areas which have been living under the Naxal threat. “This is being done to give farmers the necessary exposure and teach them modern farming techniques to improve the yield which would help them financially,” Ankit Goyal, the newly appointed superintendent of police, Gadchiroli told FPJ.
The police have chosen the highly sensitive villages of Pomke Yerkad, Murumgaon, Savargaon, Katezari and Gyarapatti for the initiative. The police have tied up with The Agricultural Technology Management Agency (ATMA) to train the farmers in groups of 15 to 20 per batch.
On a pilot basis, 7000 drumstick tree saplings were grown in the police help outpost and distributed to villagers. The villagers planted the saplings in their fields. They will be trained for proper pruning and growing techniques.
“Due to the present farming methods adopted by the farmers, they do not get their due and are facing financial crises for the entire year,” said a police officer. “The Maoist has been opposing the government benefits to reach the farmers and hence this is an effort to provide them succour.”
Drumsticks have been planted as the trees grow quickly and are nutritious. “Along with experts and the agriculture department, there are plans to impart training for growing fruits and vegetables using modern techniques. We will be growing these saplings and distributing them to the villagers. Moreover, efforts will be taken to create awareness about government benefits,” said the officer. “We will also ensure that their crops reach market places so that revenue can be generated.”