January 13-16, Dagana: The Hon’ble Minister for Agriculture and Forests, Lyonpo Yeshey Dorji, Member of Parliament for the Drukjeygang Tseza Constituency, officials from Dagana Dzongkhag Administration and MoAF officials, visited the eight geogs of Tashiding, Gozhi, Tseza, Karna, Khebisa, Dorona, Gesarling and Tsendagang.
Lyonpo and the team met with the people of all the chiwogs. In all the meetings, Lyonpo reminded people that our visionary Kings of Bhutan have brought tremendous development in the country. Bhutanese people are enjoying the fruits brought about by our selfless Kings and hence all Bhutanese should be grateful to their Majesties and pray for their good health and long lives. Lyonpo also conveyed the concept of household level food self sufficiency and encouraged all farmers to rear at least a cow each for dairy products and two poultry in each household for eggs. He explained the nutritional benefits of eggs and encouraged them to feed their children three eggs in a week. He also interacted with the people of all the chiwogs and asked the people to express problems, issues and difficulties faced by their communities.
Water scarcity is the most common issue in Dagana. Many wetlands are kept fallow as the water sources for irrigation are drying up. Pliability of farm roads, difficulty in marketing of RNR products, human-wildlife conflict were some of the problems expressed by people. Lyonpo informed them the Ministry will be working in close collaboration with Dzongkhag Administration in resolving these issues. He also encouraged farmers to practice other forms of agriculture like vegetable farming, potato cultivation and others that requires less water on their wetland.
Additionally, Lyonpo informed that the Ministry is aiming to have in place one green house and one electric fence in all chiwogs as a demonstration. He distributed polythene sheets to chiwogs that do not have greenhouses and instructed Tshogpas and RNR Extension Officers to set these up within January, 2017. Lyonpo also handed over two additional powers tillers to Tashiding and Gozhi geogs and encouraged farmers to utilise the services provided by the government. Potato tuber, maize and wheat seeds and irrigation materials like pipes and sprinklers were also provided to progressive and interested farmers and farmers’ groups.
In Gesarling, Lyonpo met around 20 school dropouts and discussed their issues and problems. They were encouraged to take up farming activities and submit proposals as per their interest to the RLDC and ARDC offices in Wangdue.
Lyonpo also inaugurated the Dagana BAFRA office and visited most geog RNR centres, farm shops, farmers’ fields, FCBL, IFPP and interacted with the staff. En route to Thimphu, Lyonpo also visited on-going winter vegetable production trial sites at ARDC- Bajo which is supported by JICA.
Till date, Lyonpo has completed visiting 176 geogs out of 205 geogs in the entire Kingdom.
– By Choidup Zangpo, ICS
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