Aizawl: Mizoram has lost maize cultivation worth Rs 7.65 crore due to the outbreak of crop damaging pest, fall armyworms, an official said on Wednesday.
Addressing state-level training programme on scientific management of fall armyworm in Aizawl on Wednesday, agriculture and rural development commissioner and secretary Lalhmingthanga said that the first incident of fall armyworm was reported in south Mizoram’s Lunglei district on April 8.
He said that the possible value loss due to the outbreak of the pest has been estimated at Rs 7.65 crore.
According to the commissioner, a state-level sub-committee was constituted comprising members from ICAR, NEIDA, KVK, leaders of the Rapid Response Team and others as per suggested by the Centre. He said that the rapid response team has come up with strategic plan to combat the pest attack.
The event organised by state agriculture department in association with ICAR-Indian Institute of Maize Research, Ludhiana and ICAR-National Bureau of Agricultural Insect Resources, Bengaluru was attended by many experts and officials, including agriculture director Dr H Saithantluanga.
Many papers in connection with management of fall armyworm were presented on the occasion by scientists and agricultural experts.
Over 5,600 families from more than 220 villages in all the eight districts have been affected by the infestation of fall armyworm since it was first detected in April. The pests have also damaged maize cultivation (68%) in more than 2,100 hectares of lands.
A group of scientists from Delhi arrived in Aizawl on Wednesday and visited the affected fields.