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Drones to be deployed in Haryana to control Locust swarms

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30 July 2020, Chandigarh: To control locust swarms and prevent losses due to crop damage, the Haryana Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Department will deploy two drones in districts Hisar and Mahendragarh today evening. These drones can be deployed in other affected areas as well, if required.

Read: Locust Control operations crosses 4 lakh hectares

Clearance for Deploying Drones

While stating this here today, Additional Chief Secretary, Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Department, Mr. Sanjeev Kaushal, said that the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) had given clearance for deploying the drones.

He said that tender had also been issued for engaging five more drones with minimum pay load capacity of 10 litres and flight operation capacity of at least four hours every day and for undertaking aerial spray operation in affected areas. These drones could be deployed for spraying in fields, community land, sand dunes, tree tops, acacia plantation, or any other affected area, as required by the Department.

Read: Need a robust policy framework for agrochemical spray using drones: FICCI-CropLife Paper

The bid documents would be available on up to 5pm on August 11, 2020. Earnest Money Deposit can be done up to 3 pm on August 10, and technical bid would be opened at 11am on August 12. Date and time of financial bid would be announced later, he added.

Mr. Kaushal said that the Department was putting in place several measures to control the swarms, including stocking additional quantities of pesticide Lamda Cyhalothrin 5 EC, deploying tractor-mounted spray pumps, and acquiring fogging machines. The preparatory measures have so far prevented significant losses in most areas during locust attacks in districts Jhajjar, Charkhi Dadri, Palwal, Sirsa, Nuh, Rewari, Bhiwani and Narnaul since June 26.

Read: Punjab Government to Partner CII for virtual Agritech Conclave in October

He assured that the Department was closely monitoring the situation, and urged farmers in the affected districts to stay alert and inform the officials if they found locusts anywhere.

Photo credit: CTA-EU on Visualhunt / CC BY-SA

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