Kera Gramam, an innovative agriculture project for the promotion of coconut farming covering around 250 hectares, was launched in Kattippara panchayat on Saturday.
Minister for Agriculture V.S. Sunil Kumar inaugurated the project which will be implemented at a cost of ₹50 lakh.
Speaking on the occasion, the Minister said the project term would be extended to three years to help farmers enrolled in the scheme avail benefits. He reminded that it was the responsibility of the panchayat to ensure the desired output under the scheme.
Kattippara is the first panchayat to be selected for the Kera Gramam project in the Koduvally Assembly constituency. Panchayat officials said the scheme was proposed in view of the interest shown by farmers in taking up coconut cultivation and replant activities.
“A major benefit of the scheme is that farmers will be given free manure, financial aid for inter-crop cultivation, and assistance for mechanised harvesting. We are sure to increase agriculture production under the scheme,” panchayat president Baby Raveendran said. She added that around 650 farmers in the panchayat would be eligible for direct benefits under the scheme.
As part of the project launch, the panchayat had already constituted ward-level coconut farmers’ committees to discuss priorities and requirements. All wards were brought under the scheme with special consideration for successful farmers.
With the extension of the scheme, farmers will get financial assistance worth ₹1.50 crore in three years.
Koduvally MLA Karat Razak chaired the event. Farmers who achieved success in coconut cultivation were honoured on the occasion.