Beni, Feb 23 : Local farmers have started potato farming in the land that has remained barren for the past 20 years at Mareni of Dhaulagiri Rural Municipality-2 in Myagdi district. A group of farmers through local Lagansheel multipurpose farmers’ group has cultivated potato in 44 ropani of land by removing shrubs. A total of 18 farmers associated with the group have commercially engaged in the farming, said the group’s chairperson Gausara BK. The group is at work to expand the cultivation to 100 ropani of land at Mareni, Paireni and Lamsung this year, he said, adding that at Mareni, farmers have planted seed potato by taking 44 ropani of land on lease.
The potato cultivation has taken place through the pocket area for potato programme launched by the rural municipality, said Amrit Thapa, technical assistant at the agriculture section at the rural municipality. “The shape of the land that remained barren for long has changed after cultivating potato. Local farmers have been encouraged to continue the farming. It will help generate incomes for them,” he said. The rural municipality has allocated Rs 1.2 million under the programme in the current fiscal year, 2022/23. Of the total applicants under the programme, the group at the rural municipality-2, and the agriculture, medicinal herb and livestock farmers’ group at the rural municipality-6 have been selected. The selected applicants will get Rs 600,000 each under the programme, said the agriculture section.