The Karnataka Government on Saturday announced a Rs 17.5 crore special package for potato growers of seven districts, who have suffered crop loss due to destruction by pests.
The cabinet meeting in Bangalore approved the special package for farmers of Hassan, Chikmagalur, Belgaum, Dharwad, Kolar, Chikkaballapur and Bangalore Rural districts, Minister for Primary and Secondary Education Vishweswara Hegde Kageri told reporters.
The government has estimated that 2.24 lakh tonnes of potato cultivated on 42,249 hectares have been damaged.
The government has decided to extend Rs 5,000 as compensation per hectare with an upper limit for two hectares to every farmer irrespective of the land holding, implying that a farmer would get a relief of Rs 10,000.
The cabinet decided to extend the Comprehensive Horticulture Development Project under implementation in the state to newer areas, investing Rs 525 crore in the next three years, he said adding that this year an expenditure of Rs 150 crore is planned.
"Under the scheme, aimed at boosting horticulture crop, the government will encourage mechanised farming, scientific management of pests and creation of marketing network," Mr Kageri said, adding that Karnataka has requested the Centre for Rs 125 crore assistance for the project.