CAU hosts awareness prog on fall armyworm

By Our Staff Reporter
IMPHAL, May 14: An awareness programme for farmers on the outbreak of fall armyworm was held today at College of Agriculture, Iroishemba under Central Agricultural University (CAU), Imphal.
The awareness programme was jointly organised by National Bureau of Agricultural Insect Resources (NBAIR), Bengaluru and CAU’s Directorate of Extension Education.
CAU VC Prof M Premjit, Extension Education Director Prof Ratan Kumar Shah, Registrar Prof K Momocha and College of Agriculture, Dean Prof Indira Sarangthem attended the awareness programme as presidium members.
Speaking at the opening session, Prof M Premjit pointed out that fall armyworms have started invading maize cultivations in different parts of the State just as they did in May last year.
A fall armyworm can multiply by a thousand within a very short time and it can fly as far as 100 Kms in a night. They have potential  to trigger extensive devastation of maize cultivations, Prof Premjit said.
Noting that all the people   have been enduring a very hard time on account of the COVID-19 pandemic, the VC warned that Manipur would continue to depend on others for food grains if the people do not pay attention to agricultural activities amid the lockdown.
He then highlighted the need for Agriculture Department, CAU, ICAR, KVK, Farmer Producer Companies and farmers to work collectively.
The State Government is in the process of setting up a committee to deal with the invasion on maize plantations by fall armyworm. CAU has already offered four scientists to the committee apart from promising     all possible help to the Chief Minister, Dr Premjit said.
He also talked about some easy methods of protecting maize plants from fall armyworm before distributing inputs to participating farmers.
Around 50 farmers from different districts of the State attended the awareness programme.