Bihar govt to spend Rs 255 crore to promote organic farming

Patna, Jan 13 (PTI) To counter the ill-effects of theconstant use of chemical fertilisers and pesticides, the Bihargovernment today said they have launched an ambitious Rs 255crore organic farming project.

"Agriculture scientists and farmers had expressed theirconcern over slowing down of farm fertility due to theconstant use of chemical fertilisers and pesticides and hadrequested the government to make measures to improve thefertility of farmland," Bihar minister for agricultureNarendra Kumar Singh told reporters here today.

Following the requests, the government has launched aproject to go for organic farming in a big way during the nextfive years at a cost of Rs 255 crore.

Under the scheme, the agriculture department wouldprovide a maximum subsidy of Rs 3,000 per unit for setting up10 vermicompost units on their land, the minister said.

Around 11,000 applications from farmers to set upvermicompost units has been cleared and the districtmagistrates directed to provide the subsidy amount.

Two commercial firms have been given the licence toproduce and sell vermicompost in the state, Singh said.

Besides, the government was also providingbio-fertilisers to the farmers aimed at improving thefertility of lands, he said.

"The plan outlay of the agriculture department in 2005-06was a meagre Rs 20 crore, but it was jacked upto Rs 803 crorein 2010," the minister said.

The government is also committed to provide agriculturalequipment and other inputs to the farmers and diesel subsidyto the farmers with a view to improving foodgrain production,he added.

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