Grow apple, paddy instead of poppy bung: Div Com

Divisional Commissioner Kashmir, Pandurang K Pole Thursday called for covering land presently under illegal poppy and bung cultivation for agricultural and horticulture purposes in Kashmir.

The Divisional Commissioner said this while chairing a meeting of officers to review the preparation for action plan for bung and poppy destruction.

He said that instead of bung or poppy, apples and paddy cultivation should be taken over on this land.

Pole said that would not only help in tackling drug abuse but also give fillip to the farmer’s economy.

The Divisional Commissioner stressed on launching massive IEC programme to persuade people using their land for agricultural and horticultural purposes instead of growing illegal plantation.

He said that the farmers should be provided assistance like agricultural input, seeds, fertilizers and necessary gadgets for using the land for growing apple and paddy crops.

The Divisional Commissioner said that through the awareness programme, people should be sensitized about the adverse effects of drug abuse on the society and the economy.

He emphasized that sustained drives should continue for destruction of poppy or bung cultivation across Kashmir.

The Divisional Commissioner directed the concerned to prepare and submit a comprehensive budget for the grant of National Fund for Control of Drug Abuse (NFCDA), to combat the cultivation of poppy and bung and menace of drug abuse.

He emphasized on proper treatment and rehabilitation of drug addicts, counseling and skill development programmes, building and strengthening of related infrastructure and continuing massive destruction drives against the cultivation.

The meeting was attended by DC Excise, Conservator Forests Kashmir, JD Agriculture, JD Horticulture, DD Health, DySP Crime, DySP ANTF.