Gandlapenta, Anantapur : National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) has embarked upon a mission of bringing fallow lands under cultivation and development under 10 watershed areas in the district. The mission is being funded by KFW Bank of Germany.
About 500 acres of land will be brought under cultivation and the mission is aimed at boosting soil fertility, treatment of watersheds, initiation of measures for adaptation to climatic changes, aberrations of erratic seasons, soil testing and changing crops to suit climate and soil conditions, issuing health cards, tank silt applications, enriching soil through micro-nutrients, gypsum application and green manuring etc.
Millet crops will be promoted in all the 500 acres in the 10 watershed areas. The 10 project areas in the district include Battalapalle, Garudapuram in Kalyandurg mandal, Marutla and Chilapalle in Garladinne and Singanamala mandals, Peddepalle and Goundlapalle in Tanekally mandal, Somarajukunta in NP Kunta mandal, Daniyanicheruvu and Toopalle in Gandlapenta mandal and Cherlopalle in Obuladevacheruvu mandal in the district.
About Rs 50 lakh is being spent to implement the various works for the development of fallow lands of 50 acres in every watershed area identified in the 10 mandals. As part of land development, deep ploughing of fallow lands has been undertaken with the help of tractor.
NABARD assistant general manager Ravindra told The Hans India that Rs 5 crore fund had been made available by the German Bank for the comprehensive and integrated land development.
The project include soil and water conservation measures, soil improvement and productivity enhancement which include adopting of natural farming methods and vermi-compost, sustainable farming practices and nutritional security and promotion of alternate crops including millets and floriculture and Annapoorna model of raising multiple agriculture and horticulture plants in half acre, which are needed for a family and effectively handling climate changes risks.
As part of the mission, farmers will be accorded training and capacity building through exposure visits to study seed bank concepts, NPM shops and value addition to crops raised. In all the project areas, a committee with farmers and stake holders had been constituted to ensure that all parameters are complied to accomplish the mission of land development.
Narayana Naik, a farmer of Gandlapenta mandal said NABARD has identified the fallow lands lying idle in the watershed areas and initiated development of useless lands involving the local community. Raising of millet crops in the fallow lands would greatly enhance food security to the farmers, he added.