Staff Reporter :
Maharashtra Government is taking help of drones to shower pesticides in Vidarbha and other districts to curb the locusts attack that is destroying crops, informed State Agriculture Minister Dadaji Bhuse in a press conference held at Bachat Bhavan, at the Collectorate on Tuesday. Bhuse was in the city to chair a meeting of officials of Nagpur Division through video conferencing.
“State Government is taking this threat seriously and within two to three days we will get permission to use drones for showering pesticide from concerning departments,” said Bhuse. Government is concerned about water bodies while spraying pesticides with the help of drones. To kill swarm of locusts, spraying of pesticide should be done in a huge area and this process will also pollute water bodies. Hence Government is taking help of experts in this regard. A swarm of desert locusts, which is a type of a species of short-horned grasshoppers, flew across Vidarbha’s Amravati, Wardha and Nagpur on May 25.
The locusts descended on orange and sweet lime orchards in Katol, as well as the Neem trees in Morshi and Warud in Amravati. “District administrations came in action on the very first night of the locust attack and showered pesticides with the help of fire tenders and tankers early morning in affected areas,” informed Bhuse.
“The swarm of locusts has attacked many villages of Saoner taluka. I have instructed the Agriculture Department and the administration to provide necessary mechanism to curb the threat and instructed the officials to check the total loss incurred due to locust attack,” informed Agriculture Minister to mediapersons. “World Health Organisation (WHO) informed that the swarm may attack at Dhule and Nandurbar areas in the State but it hit in Vidarbha,” said Bhuse. The locust attack previously took place 17 years ago in Dhule and Nandurbar areas but the intensity was small, he further added. “We have instructed all concerned departments to take quick action and provide pesticide to farmers if they require for spraying. Government will curb this attack soon,” said Agriculture Minister.