Only 30 per cent paddy farms planted in Dhankuta

Dhankuta, July 15

Barely 30 per cent of paddy plantation has been completed in Dhankuta by mid-July.

Amidst inadequate rainfall and lack of irrigation, most of the farmland in places such as Dhankuta, Mahalaxmi and Pakhribas municipalities and Chhatharjorpati and Chaubise rural municipalities haven’t been cultivated.

Paddy plantation is done in 7,877 hectares in the district, and agriculture technicians fear a huge drop in paddy production in the district this year due to lack of rain and farm-hands.

Dor Bahadur Poudel, a farmer of Mahalaxmi Municipality said the farmers in his village were worried about finding alternatives to manage food grains this time. “We’re through the first half of July and haven’t been able to cultivate our land as there hasn’t been any rain,” he said, adding, “As the local rivers too are running low, it’s highly likely we won’t be able to plant paddy this year.” Another farmer Dhan Bahadur Basnet also expressed his worry at having to leave his farmland fallow this season.

Though there are some small irrigation projects, they are sure to be of no help this year given that the rivers feeding these small irrigation projects are running low on water. “The district had seen only 50 per cent paddy planting last year due to drought, and it seems even that much of planting won’t be possible this year,” said District Agriculture Development Office Chief Surya Prasad Sapkota, adding that paddy produces this year is expected to decline.