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'Alternative crops seeds' distributed to farmers at Senapati

Source: The Sangai Express
Senapati, October 03 2021: "Training & Distribution of good seeds as an alternative crops seed/planting materials to the affected farmers in connection to destruction of Poppy plants in Senapati district during 2020-21" was held at Senapati on Saturday.

The program was organised by District Officer, (Horticulture & Soil Conservation), Senapati in collaboration with Superintendent of Police, Senapati district.

Speaking on the occasion, Kh Upendra Singh, District Officer, (Horticulture & Soil Conservation), Senapati stated that the programme was organised under the initiative of the State Chief Minister on "No to Drugs" movement.

He said that the department of Horticulture & Soil Conservations distributed good seeds as alternative crops seed/planting materials to the affected farmers including cabbage, quinoa and ginger while adding that beneficiaries through recommendations from the SP office from different regions in the district.

                       'Alternative crops seeds' distributed to farmers at Senapati

The seeds were distributed to village headmen of different villages for alternative cropping, he added.

M Pradip Singh, IPS, SP, Senapati stated that destruction of poppy plantations started when Athem Muivah, IAS was the Deputy Commissioner of the district and has continued till date.

Various awareness programmes had reportedly been organised post destruction of poppy plantations in the past.

Different tribe leaders of the district had also taken the pledge to plant alternative crops instead of poppy.

He continued that the Union Home Minister had recently warned of such illegal cultivation in the past and urged the people not to continue poppy plantation post distribution of alternative crops.

Tholu Rocky, MPS, Additional SP (Law & Order), Senapati spoke on the topic, "Awareness on illegal and negative environmental impacts of poppy cultivation in hilly areas of Senapati".

Talking about negative environmental impacts, the MPS officer stated that acres of forest cover were cut down for poppy cultivation which gave way to landslides and soil erosion.

Use of chemicals, fertilizers and pesticides has degraded the soil.

Deforestation has affected the natural cycle of the ecosystem.

It may be mentioned that Section 17 of the NDPS act says that whoever manufactures, possesses, sells, purchases, transport (import/export) in the State can go for rigorous imprisonment for up to 10 years minimum and 20 years maximum with fine of Rs 1 lakh and above.

Whoever cultivates poppy, ganja or any narcotic plants can be imprisoned for 10 years or up to 20 years with a fine of Rs 1 lakh and above.

NDPS act under section 46 says that every landowners are also asked to give immediate information to any officer of Police or other departments like excise, Narcotics, Customs, Revenue or Central Forces like BSF or CRPF, etc.

It also asked the village leaders like village sarpanch, village chief or village authority to give information to the mentioned Government officials under section 17 of the NDPS Act.

During the programme, seeds of cabbage and Quinoa were distributed to selected beneficiaries followed by a technical session wherein Homen Kangjam, Farm Manager, KVK, Hengbung, Senapati spoke on "Alternative horticultural crops to replace poppy- cabbage, Quinoa and Ginger" and U Supriya Devi, AO, Directorate of Horticulture & Soil Conservation, Manipur on "Crop insurance of Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY)" .