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Irri, Boro harvest goes on in full swing in Rajshahi

RAJSHAHI, May 23, 2018 (BSS)- Harvesting of Irri-Boro is progressing fast everywhere in the region including its vast barind tract with a satisfactory yield.

In the current season, 15 to 25 maunds of paddy are being harvested in the high and mid-barind land while 18 to 20 maunds in the floodplain area.

"I have harvested 24 mounds of paddy from one bigha of land," said Md Jabu, a farmer of Bhatupara village under Godagari upazila. Shariful Islam, another farmer of Baliaghata village, got 25.5 mounds of paddy.

Haider Ali, 43, of Bhatopara village under Godagari upazila, is also happy over his harvested yield in the current Irri-boro season.

Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) had set a target of bringing around 3.51 lakh hectares of land under the Irri-boro cultivation in four districts of the region. But the farmers have cultivated paddy on around 3.71 lakh hectares.

Additional Director of DAE, Rajshahi Region, Mustafizur Rahman told BSS that a number of factors like favourable climatic condition, adequate supply of necessary inputs like mixed fertilizers and pesticides have contributed to the expected bumper output.

"We hope that Irri-Boro production target will be achieved because of availability of irrigation water and also effectively checking pest attacks," Agriculturist Rahman pointed out. He expects an estimated production of about 13.92 lakh tonnes of rice this season.

Meanwhile, the harvested paddy appeared in the rural hats and other growth centers. It has been learnt from various sources that beside their bumper production, the farmers are also getting fair price of their newly harvested boro paddy.

The paddy is being sold at Taka 1,020 to 1,050 per maund depending on variety and quality at all the trading points. Meanwhile, procurement of Boro rice has been started in the district with the main thrust of facilitating the farmers towards getting fair price of the newly harvested food grain.

The government has taken decision of procuring 6,571 tonnes of rice in the district and the decision has made the farmers happy.

District Controller Office of Food has started the rice procurement with the main targets of ensuring value support to the farmers, keeping the market price of food grain to a reasonable rate, building food security stock and continuing the supply system of official food distribution.

Noruttam Kumar Pramanik, information officer of Food Controller Office, here told BSS the procurement drive will continue till August 31. Rice will be procured from only the license holding millers at Taka 38 per kilograms in the district.

Nurul Amin Siddiqui, a farmer of Paba upazila, said in previous years the procurement drive started after completing the harvest of Boro paddy.

That's why the farmers used to sell their paddy in fewer prices much before the start of procurement, he said.

"But this year, the growers will get fair price as the government took initiative of procuring rice at initial stage of harvesting," Nurul Amin said adding that farmers of the region are very much hopeful with the government initiative.

Rafiqul Islam, president of District Rice Husking Mills Owners Association, said 240 mill owners have signed contracts with the government this season.