Hundreds of farmers of Lalmonirhat district have become frustrated about the attack of blast diseases in their paddy fields. Just before the ripening blast diseases are damaging the whole paddy fields. After the attack of the disease within a very short time the whole paddy trees are getting dried.
Particularly the BRI-28,BRI-81,Jira Shail, and Minicate variety are badly affected by the disease. After using various pesticides and chemicals farmers are not getting any remedy from the attack or spreading. A vast tract of paddy field in Khulaghat, Gokunda, Borobari of sadar, Palashi, Vadai of Adimari and Kakina, Tushvander, Dologram of Kaligonj upazila is seriously affected.
Visiting some areas under sadar Lalmonirhat, Aditmari and Kaligonj upazilla of the district it is found that a vast tract of paddy fields has been attacked by the blast disease. Farmers are confused about what to do. They are very much worried about their next few months' foods as they are dependable on their produced crops.
They alleged that they did not get any support from the local agriculture department in this situation. They used various chemicals and pesticides as per the instruction of the local fertilizer shopkeepers. But all efforts are in vain.
Nurujjaman, a farmer of Araji Dewdoba said that the cost of pesticide is very much high but it does not work.
Baccha Mia (50), a marginal farmer of Dewdoba village of Palashi union under Aditmari upazilla, said his five members family depends on agriculture. He maintains his family by selling his produced paddy and bears other expenses. This year he cultivated Jira Shail variety on 95 decimal of land at Dewdoba. But suddenly he found that his paddy plants are dying. Instantly he contacted the local fertilizer shop of his area and shown him the paddy plants. The fertilizer shopkeeper advised him to use a chemical that cost 350 taka for one bigha. But he does not get any fruitful remedy after using the chemical.
Kajali Begum (40) expressed her deep concern about her family as her 14 decimal paddy field is fully damaged by the blast disease. She has no alternative to feed her children during this pandemic situation.
Kasua (50) a farmer of the same village said he cultivated BRI-28 variety on his 2.5 bighas of land. In the last few days his paddy field turned to silvery color attacked by the disease. He is very much worried about his food security for the next few months. If once attacked within a very short time whole paddy field turns white. Every day the number of affected paddy fields is increasing everywhere.
When contacted, Deputy Director (DD) Shamim Ashraf of the Department of Agricultural and Extension (DAE) said that this year farmers cultivated Boroon 47,650 hectares of land. But unfortunately, BRI-28,BRI-81 and Jira Shail variety are mainly affected by Neck Blast disease in some areas of the district.
We are providing support and direction to the farmers on how to overcome the situation. The blast-affected varieties are very old. If it is once found in a paddy field then it's difficult to protect because it spreads rapidly damaging the whole paddy field, he added.