Mangaluru, Jul 26: A farmer has been growing sugarcane in a land he has taken on lease in the outskirts of the city. He has emerged as a role model for people who are willing to work hard.
Ashok from Panjmogaru has taken on lease 1.5 acres of land from a person near Manjalpaade. Ashok, who also sells tender coconut through line sales, is engaged in sugarcane farming. For some years he cultivated sugarcane in Kulur but has now shifted his activity to Manjalpaade.
Sugarcane is grown over a period of eight months. Land is ploughed with a tractor and after planting, the same is covered in mud. Thereafter, close watch is kept on the growth of sugarcane. Services of local workers and those from north Karnataka are used and Rs 1.7 lac is spent on 1.5 acres of land. He expects income of four lac rupees. There is good demand for local sugarcane here, than those coming in from Mandya and Hassan.
Sugarcane crop in this area does not face danger from wild animals. But rats this time have been damaging the crops by draining away juice from the canes.
After the sugarcane is harvested, Ashok grows okra in the same field. He sells the crop to merchants in Baikampady wholesale market. He has raised up to two quintals of okra in one season. He ensures that his canes are fully grown and ready for harvest during festivals like Vinayaka Chaturthi, Tulasi Puja, Monti fest etc as there is good demand for the same then. On Monti fest day, Ashok’s produce gets lot of demand as people like to have sugarcanes of standard size.
Ashok says he is prepared to give advice to youngsters interested in raising sugarcane crop. He feels that the young people can earn profit if they show interest in agriculture.