TRICHY: With a view to sustaining incomes of tribal farmers and preventing migration, Nabard has launched a project with a total outlay of Rs 6.99 crore. The amount consists of a grant of Rs 5.85 crore and Rs 1.14 crore as loans.
The project covers all 1,390 tribal families in both Trichy and Salem districts. As the scheme gathering pace, officials made a visit to inspect the progress of the plan and instructed district-level authorities to fast-track it. The grant component covers activities for provision of 40 cashews, 54 mango and 80 silver oak plantations in one acre with provision for taking up inter cropping.
Intercrops have been provided to farmers in a bid offset the loss during the initial years of planting fruits. Accordingly, 238 farmers received gram seeds, 301 farmers got gram seeds and 400 have been given castor plants seeds, S Suresh, Kumar assistant general manager, Nabard, Trichy, said.
During the visit, Nabard Chennai general manager A K Padhi said that they have provided saplings of 52,000 cashews, 70,200 mangoes and 1.04 lakh silver oak to select tribal families in the region.
Income from the fruits planted during the first year of the project is expected to yield Rs 1 lakh per acre. Survival rate of the plants has been put at over 90 percent for all the 3 plants with 10-15 percent replaced during the project, he said.
“Farmers would roughly make a net earning of Rs 9,000 per acre from these intercrops alone.
The highlight of the project has been that 349 acres of barren land have been converted into cultivable land because of soil and water conservation measures initiated under the project,” he said.