Tripura Government Encouraging Mechanized Transplanting Of Paddy

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Posted in Featured, Northeast, Tripura
Abhijit Nath, NET Correspondent, Tripura

Agartala, July 29, 2023 With the peak agricultural season in full swing, the demand for labour-intensive operations like transplanting has created a shortage of labour in many areas. To address this challenge and reduce costs, the Government is actively encouraging the adoption of appropriate mechanization in agricultural activities.

Various designs of mechanical transplanters for mat nursery, including fully automatic riding type, walk behind type, manual types with 4, 6, and 8-row capabilities, as well as direct rice seeders, are now commercially available from reputed manufacturers across the country. In an effort to popularize these options, Front Line Demonstration (FLD) programs have been actively promoting all types of transplanters. Additionally, entrepreneurs are being encouraged to take up custom-hiring of mechanical transplanters.

In a significant move to further promote the use of Self Propelled Paddy Transplanters, the Bishalgarh Agricultural Sector, under the Bishalgarh Agricultural Subdivision in Sepahijala district, is conducting demonstrations at farmers’ fields. The government is providing grant-in-aid to assist with the procurement of machines and cover the contingent expenditure of these demonstrations.

A Front Line Demonstration was successfully conducted at Prabhurampur Gram Panchayat, under the Bishalgarh Agricultural Sector, in the plot owned by Karmabir Choudhary, along with 9 other farmers’ plots yesterday. A vast area of 1 hectare was effectively transplanted using the Self Propelled Paddy Transplanter.

The introduction of this innovative machinery has received positive feedback from farmers like Karmabir Choudhary, who expressed his enthusiasm, stating, “I feel the machine has made paddy farming very interesting. It saves time, energy, and money. It has thwarted the need for depending on farm workers for transplantation.”

The Department of Agriculture has been inundated with inquiries from various farmers seeking to acquire the machine with the available subsidies. The cost-effectiveness of using the Self Propelled Paddy Transplanter is apparent, as a farmer who owns the machine needs only Rs. 1,000 to complete paddy transplantation. Even for farmers hiring the machine, the cost is affordable, amounting to Rs. 2,000, which includes raising the nursery. Furthermore, the process requires just two workers for transplanting on three kani of land.

In contrast, traditional nursery systems with hired labour can demand at least Rs. 4,000 per paddy transplantation per kani. The need to arrange for farm labourers and the associated challenges make farm machinery the need of the hour.

With the Government’s continued support and encouragement, the adoption of mechanical transplanters in agriculture is expected to surge, addressing the labour scarcity and enhancing efficiency for farmers nationwide.

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