Rainfall boosts agriculture output in Kashmir

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Srinagar, June 2 (ANI): Vegetable growers in Kashmir are in good spirits after their parched lands received heavy and continuous rainfall.

Carrot, potato, onion, kashmiri 'hak', cabbage, nadroo (lotus stem) and cauliflower are the principle vegetables cultivated and exported from the region.

According to the state Agriculture Department, the bumper yield is slated to surpass the 2009 production benchmark of 800,000 metric tonnes.

The introduction of hybrid varieties of seeds, protected cultivation and use of modern technologies led to the phenomenal rise in vegetable produce this year.

"Under one of our agriculture-oriented schemes, the Rashtriya Kisan Bima Yojana (RKBY), we have placed vegetable production as a thrust area. Steps such as area expansion, introduction of hybrid varieties of seeds, among others, increase the production per unit area," said Abdul Majeed, Director of Agriculture Department, Srinagar.

"This year, the vegetable production has increased tremendously because of the abundant rainfall. The rains came just when they were needed the most. I cultivate cauliflower and cabbage, and am getting good returns from them by exporting the produce to nearby states," said Mushtaq Bhat, a cultivator.

A large chunk of produce from Kashmir is exported to the nearby states such as Punjab, Haryana, Delhi and Uttar Pradesh.

In 2009, the produce exported from Kashmir was two hundred thousand tonnes, fetching Rs. 1.35 billion as revenue for the state. Officials claim that this year, vegetable exports from Kashmir, could cross this mark.

The hybrid varieties of seeds have not only increased production but it has also earned more profit for the farmers.

The total area under vegetable cultivation has also increased and contributed to the increased production. (ANI)

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