Hisar, Jun 18: Plant Biotechnology Centre of Hisar has distributed six lakh plants of Jatropha, used for preparing biodiesel, free of cost to the farmers.
The Centre for Research and Application in Plant Tissue Culture (CRAPTC) has undertaken research to multiply Jatropha plants in a larger number through tissue culture, said Dr Ashok Dhavan, Director.
''The Centre proposes to increase its yearly production from one lakh fifty thousand Jatropha plants to at least two lakh plants by the end of current year,'' he said.
Oil of Jatropha seeds is used as a biodiesel while its cake is used as organic fertiliser. Jatropha oil can be used as a substitute for diesel, kerosene and other fuel oils.
Its oil is also used in medicines to treat rheumatism, ulcers, laxatives and paralysis etc.
''We give plants of Jatropha as well as bamboo, which can become a source of income for farmers, free of cost as the Central Government is paying us the price of plants and assistance for research,'' he said.
The Central Government's Department of Biotechnology has earmarked 10 thousand crores to give boost to the production of biodiesel in the next five years.
''The farmers have started selling Jatropha seeds to a UK firm engaged in preparing biodiesel at Yamuna Nagar,'' he said.
Jatropha seeds yield oil upto 42 per cent, highest in the world.
The small tree starts producing seeds between three to five years and continues to produce for almost twenty five years. These trees can be grown even in barren land.