Bhubaneswar: The state government has announced financial assistance for the betel leaf and kewra farmers in Odisha.
The government has planned to provide financial aid to betel leaf farmers through a special scheme. Farmers having betel leaf plantation on at least 200 square metres of land would be eligible for the scheme. The Agriculture and Farmers’ Empowerment department will prepare a set of guidelines in this regard, said a senior official.
An eligible farmer would get financial assistance of Rs 2,500 per one unit of betel leaf farming. He can avail the aid for a maximum of two units. Besides, the betel leaf farmers would be provided with interest-free loans up to Rs 1 lakh, added the official.
“The state government will provide subsidies to the betel leaf processing units in Odisha. The Agricultural Promotion and Investment Corporation of Odisha Limited (APICOL) will prepare a detailed project report (DPR) in this regard,” said the official.
The state government has also decided to provide incentives to the kewra growers of Ganjam district by including them under the National Horticulture Mission. Besides, the state government will provide financial aid to the kewra farmers from its own resources, informed the official.
“The government will provide assistance to the kewra farmers to mitigate their losses during natural calamities. The Agriculture department and Ganjam district administration will jointly prepare modalities for the scheme,” revealed the official.
This apart, steps will be taken for inclusion of kewra flower processing units in the Mukhyamantri Krushi Udyog Yojana of the Odisha government. The Odisha University of Agriculture and Technology (OUAT) or any other institute will be roped in to provide technical assistance to the kewra growers in Ganjam, said the official.