Prospect of sustainable development in Jiribam and Pherzawl districts
- Part 2 -

Lalthangvung Songate *

Map of Pherzawl district
Map of Pherzawl district :: Pix - TSE

Plantation of Crops

The hot and wet climate favours the growth of different fruits but over-production always taken place due to easy way of production and weak purchasing power of local people and lack of good transportation system and storage facilities.

Moreover, unlike temperate regions products like wheat, meat, milk and cheese, fruits are not much of our daily needs, it is necessary items only for few rich people. For sustainable development, plantation of cash crop will be done with the aim in view that over-production and depletion of natural resources will not cause in the process.

Which items will be produced without fearing over-production and unforseeable competition is the most important point for deliberation. In view of the above mentioned view point the following cash Crops plantation seems to be most advisable.

1. Arecanut Plantation: The total product of arecanut in India in 2014-15 was about 745 Lakh tons. It is only two-third of the country’s requirement. It is imported from Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Nepal and Myanmar. Even if itis grown in all the suitable land of the two districts, no over-production will happened.

Eventhough Arecanut plantation a long-term process, bearing nut seven years after, banana, broomsticks and cardamom can help compensatethe expenses and as shading Crops. For successful arecanut plantation, other factors remain the same; seed selection is to be taken as top priority.

The palms of forty or more years old bearing nuts earlier and better in compare with other are selected. Searching through internet recently found that 15-30 years old with good bearing capacity, is also recommended.

As arecanutpalm is susceptible to strong wing, tree or bamboo should be planted in belts for wind breakers at a distant interval enough to shield the plants. The yield of arecanut per acre is 10 quintals for white and 7 quintals for red Variety.

1. Rubber Plantations: It is also an eco-friendly and one of the limitless demands of the products. Even though synthetic rubber surpass in the resistance against oil, there’s remain some uniqueness of natural rubber in its properties. It still occupies 40% of world trade in rubber. Even two acre rubber estate, in which 300-400 rubber tree can be planted is enough for the mainstay of a medium size family.

Even if all the land available for rubber and areca nut plantation around Barak, Tuivai, Jiri, Tuipi, Tuijang and Tuibum, are used for the plantation, there will be no impact on the volume of demand, the market price is also more stable in compare with ginger. The yield of rubber reaches the peak stage after 15 years of planting.

An Annual average yield is about 375 to 400 kg. per hectare from seeding trees and 800kgs. to 1000kgs.per hectare in budded plants. The ex- farmprice is mainly Rs. 80-100 and Rs.140 in the market rate.

Tea Plantation: Even though the climate and soil arefavourable, in all the villages of the twodistricts,small tea garden maintained or abandon are found. Small quantities are cured traditionally. Now a day’s CTC tea is preferably to all except green tea prepared in small quantity. Large estate with sophisticated machinery with huge investment is not so advisably as for as it can it can be seen in the eye of inclusive growth. It seems it is a few rich and many poor system of economy.

Fishery: In the valley where fishery pond can be made attached with homestead integrated Poultry-fish Farm or Integrated Piggery- Fish farm is the most advantage technology these days. In this system Poultry or Piggery shed were built over the fishery pond. The planktons, a micro-organism are grown on the litters of excrement.

Plankton is the best fish food. At the interval of three or four years, night-soil and decomposed dung at the bottom of the pond should be removed for manuring the field or garden nearby. In the hills fishery pond should be built by constructing dams across slow flowing streams. The most ideal species seems to be indigenous fish that need minimum care.

Channa (snakehead ) family, locally called Ngamu or ngavawk with sub species namely, channagachua (dwarf), channaorientalis and channamarulius (giant). Being predator they can care by themselves by feeding on other living organisms. They can be produced without spoil in the far flung areas where no cold storage facilities available as they can take in atmospheric oxygen directly.

Before rearing the fishes, ponds should be left for two to three years to allow multiplication of frogs population that begets tadpole for fish food. This is proved good in Sartuinek Village near Tipaimukh, ChannaMarulius (giant species) taken from Barak river was reared in a fish-pond and was very successful.

Where ever flat or gentle sloped land and irrigation is possible within the plantation farm, terrace cultivation should be practiced in small area to make fresh vegetable and local rice organically produced can be available. It must be the most rewarding if mixed-farming is partially or in a miniature form is practised.

In small plantation farms cardamom, cocoa, kalamircha, pineapple, perenial vegetables domesticated from forest, etc. can be grown to supplement farmers’ income. In the large plantation farms, cattle rearing to reduce the cost of weed control and to supplement farmers’ income is advisable.

Crop Rotation in The Irrigation Valleys: Crop rotation is the successive cultivation of different crops in a specific order on the same field to avoid rapid soil depletion and for the controlof pest. Seasonal rotation of cereal with leguminous crop and fodder is the most desirable rotation, Until and unless mono-cropping is replace by seasonal crop rotation with improved irrigation and farming technique, progress in the life of small and marginal farmers will not be there.

As the area under wetland paddy cultivation is not large even for the two districts, it may not be too heavy for the State government to develop with Green Revolution or Sustainable Development process. It can be taken up as a pilot Zone for Sustainable Development in the whole of the North Eastern region.

Industrial Estate: Industrial Estate is already established in most Districts of the State. For all round and inclusive development establishment of industrial Estate one each in the two districts is a must. There is a bright prospect of forest base industries like bamboo and lamin boards which are highly valued in building and furniture works. Small Scale industrial enterprise can also be undertaken if Industrial Estate established.

Some Suggestion for quickening materialization of the development process.

1. Development of Infrastructure: Rapid development of transport and communication system and regular supply of electricity are the two Pre- requisite for development process. Apart from other infrastructure such as banking, health service and education. The two infrastructures should be taken to top priority.

2. Instruction of new technique of agriculture: New Technique of agriculture like other technique is difficult catch but it is easy through practiced audio-visual instructions in practical experience from progressive farmers in the “ learn while you earn” system of instruction. From some successful farmers the local people will catch the simple technique of say, are canut plantation or rubber plantation through budding method. And the local people will start by their own. This kind of instruction and to switch on the new venture is also called Demonstration effect.

3. Incentive Grant: Sustainable development can also help promoted through incentive grants from government or other agencies if available.

4. One way to start with minimum investment: For small scale plantation farm with family labors, it can be started with Jhumming in the first year by growing cereals and cash crops. Some banana and leguminous shade trees should also be planted as land preparation for are canut or rubber.

Anyhow, Government take strong steps in developing Development infrastructures especially transport and communication and regular supply of power and some section of local people, pensioners and rich businessmen who can invest take stern steps in the sustainable development , the most desirable kind of development, eco-friendly or sustainable development will be attained sooner or later. But if not the region will be remain undeveloped like many other regions in spite of steady growth in GDP of India.


* Lalthangvung Songate wrote this article for The Sangai Express
This article was webcasted on December 04, 2017.

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