PESHAWAR – The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has proposed a mega agriculture development package for budget 2021-22, focusing on increasing of horticultural land, meat and poultry production and assistance to farmers through Kisan (farmers) card under the Prime Minister National Agriculture Emergency Programme (NAEP) amounting to over Rs309 billion.
Under the package, the government has decided to launch special projects related to strengthening of livestock, fisheries and food security programmes besides providing assistance to farmers under Kisan Cards to be issued by August this year under the Agriculture Transformation Plan (ATP) approved by the Chief Minister KP, officials in Agriculture Department told APP.
Under ATP, 150 moisture meters would be installed to ascertain level of moisture in lands across KP to bring maximum areas under agriculture cover. He said these meters would be installed under Irrigated Agriculture Project. The Prime Minister’s Save the Calf, Poultry programmes and Feedlot Fattening projects would continue and added that under Save the Calf programme, about 3, 80,000 male buffalo’s calves would be fattened in the country including 30,000 in KP to increase meat production.
The official said Rs 6,500 would be provided to registered farmers following their looking after for it least six months besides free milk, vaccination and medicines.
Quality seeds would be provided to farmers and for this purpose initially 12,000 metric tons seeds were being purchased for distribution among farmers aimed at to increase per acre production of wheat, rice, maize and sugarcane etc.
Focus would be made on increasing of orchards, establishment of agriculture business authority and seeds industry in KP.
Government would establish digital service platform besides focusing on rehabilitation of infertile and nonproductive lands and increasing honey production.
Transfer of tube wells on solar energy, research on different varieties of vegetables, establishment of Agriculture Mart at Peshawar, promoting aquaculture technology for increase fish production, establishment of livestock and animal husbandry university at Swat were also proposed for ADP 2021-22.
Around 287 trout fish farms mostly in Malakand and Hazara Divisions would be established with an estimated cost of Rs1286.914 million to utilize its abundance of cold water reservoirs, lakes and favourable climate conditions mostly suited for trout fish farming.
These trout’s farms are being established under ‘development of water fisheries in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa,’ project. Federal government would contribute Rs514.766 million and KP government would inject Rs772.148 million in the mega trout project that would be completed by 2023-24.
The department would setup 250 civil veterinary dispensaries, increasing meat, milk and poultry’s production, extension of breeding network, establishment of Feeds Research Institute and water management offices and storage of rain water besides others agriculture, livestock and poultry projects.
Telefarming and integrated Agriculture programme would be strengthened and services of model farms centres equipped with all facilities would be expanded. Under Tele Farming System (TFS), tale farming centres equipped with web portal, mobile applications, management information system and SMS have been established to facilitate farmers.