Nagpur, Jun 2 (PTI) The Maharashtra government will soon start using drones to spray insecticides on swarms of locusts, Agriculture Minister Dada Bhuse said on Tuesday.
Locust swarms are currently spotted in Bhetisurla near Sawangi village in Saoner taluka of Nagpur district where about 500 litres of insecticides had been sprayed, the minister told reporters, after attending a review meeting on upcoming Kharif crop season in the Nagpur division.
He said drones will be used from Friday onwards for spraying of insecticides in the areas affected by locusts.
Huge swarms of desert locusts had entered some areas under Nagpur division in Vidarbha region on May 25.
Though not much damage was caused to Kharif crops, the flying pets devoured leaves of oranges and sweet limes, and damaged vegetables in some farms.
The minister said directions have been given to departments of agriculture and revenue to asses the losses.
Meanwhile, Bhuse also said that 32 lakh farmers had applied under the 'Mahatma Jyotiba Phule' crop loan waiver scheme, and the amount of Rs 12,000 crore has been deposited in the accounts of 19 lakh of 30 lakh eligible farmers before the lockdown came into force.
He said a state-wide drive will be undertaken to bring more agriculturists, who were left out due to technical reasons like discrepancies in spellings etc, in the ambit of the 'Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi Yojana' once the lockdown ends.
'We had brought these discrepancies to the notice of Union agriculture minister. The state government has decided to undertake a state-wide drive to correct these anomalies, once the lockdown is lifted,' he said. PTI CLS NSK NSK