Assam: Deadly Pests Ravage Golakganj Area, Leaving Farmers in Despair
Guwahati, 20th November: A distressing wave of deadly pests has ravaged the rural Golakganj area in Assam’s Dhubri district, marking a concerning development. The infestation primarily targets paddy fields in Jhapusabari PT 2 (under Ranpagli GP), Dighaltari (under Sonakhuli GP), Kaimari (Kaimari GP), and Pogalagi (Pogalagi GP), and the Golakganj area of Dhubri District. This leaves farmers grappling with the aftermath, raising serious concerns about the region’s agricultural sustainability.
The lush paddy fields, vital for many Golakganj villages, have succumbed to the insatiable appetite of these pests, disrupting normal activities and plunging the farming community into turmoil. The swarms voraciously consume numerous bighas of ripened paddy crops, leaving once-thriving fields devastated.
Expressing frustration, Golakganj farmers allege negligence by the State Agriculture Department. Despite multiple warnings about the imminent threat, farmers claim no action was taken to curb the pest invasion. Faced with the relentless onslaught, some farmers resorted to drastic measures, setting their fields ablaze to eradicate the pests.
“We have no grains. We reaped a harvest badly damaged by pests. After that, we burnt them. I have seven bighas of land, all affected. We received no help from the government or the village council. We burnt them as they were damaged, and nobody will buy them,” said a distraught farmer.
The economic toll on the farming community is evident, with livelihoods hanging in the balance. Farmers, already grappling with the financial impact, find themselves at a crossroads.
“After rice, we planned to harvest maize, but the scale of this infestation is so massive it will likely affect our farmlands for many seasons,” lamented another distressed farmer.
The use of pesticides, a common method to combat such pests, poses challenges. Farmers argue that using pesticides could compromise farm product quality, creating a dilemma for those depending on yields for sustenance and income.
The calamity’s scale is staggering, with an estimated 300 to 400 acres of farmland in Golakganj’s rural areas bearing the brunt of the pest invasion. As the agricultural heart of the region quivers under this unexpected crisis, the immediate future looks uncertain for Golakganj farmers, emphasizing the need for swift and effective intervention to salvage what remains of the once-flourishing fields.