Karnataka Current Affairs – KAS/KPSC Exams – 28th October 2018

Harvesters make it easy for farmers


  • Agricultural fields which otherwise would have been left unploughed are being cultivated now
  • Agricultural fields that otherwise would have been left uncultivated are being worked on thanks to mechanisation
  • As the harvester cuts paddy shoots, separating the grains and disposing of the grass systematically & just need to pay Rs. 2,000 an hour for the harvester within which time the fully grown paddy crop in one acre could be harvested.
  • If done through traditional harvesting, it would have taken at least a week to take the paddy home, cutting the crop, bundling the shoots together, taking them to harvesting yard, beating the shoots to separate paddy, cleaning the paddy and bagging it.
  • With the harvester however, the entire task is over within half a day. There is not even the need for cleaning the paddy
  • All farmers who own paddy fields adjacent to the Souparnika river in Maravanthe have gone for mechanised farming.
  • They hire paddy planting machines during the sowing season and go for harvesters to take the produce home.
  • Come October, one can see truck-mounted paddy harvesters moving along NH 66 in coastal Karnataka with the arrival of paddy harvesting season.
  • Owners of harvesters, most of them from Raichur, entrust them to a local agent, who deploys them in paddy fields as and when requests came.
  • Channabasava, assistant operator with the harvester at Maravanthe, said his owner is from Sindhanur in Raichur district and he owns about 10 machines. Owners also have their own trucks for transporting the machines.
  • While the machines are stationed at a centrally located town, at times, operators stay back with harvesters at agricultural fields when there is continuous booking, he said. By mid-November, the machines move to Davangere region and thereafter to their home turf.

Survey of sand blocks in non-CRZ areas begins

  • The survey of one-acre sand blocks in non-Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) areas began across Udupi district
  • This survey had been started after the Secretary for Mines and Geology gave the nod.
  • Earlier, the surveyors had to identify five-acre sand blocks in non-CRZ areas. But it was difficult to find such huge sand blocks. Besides, village accountants too had spotted some sand dunes in some villages in non-CRZ areas and these too would be surveyed.
  • A bathymetry survey seven kilometres upstream of Baje Dam, 18 km from here, to measure the availability of sand was done on October 18. Once silt was removed from this area, the availability of sand would increase, she said.
  • Two sand blocks in non-CRZ areas had already been identified in Karkala taluk. Tenders had been floated by the Public Works Department for the removal of sand there. The sand removed there will be used for works under government departments.
  • Though four sand blocks had been identified in Byndoor taluk under non-CRZ areas, sand removal could not be allowed there as the poll code for Shivamogga parliamentary bypoll was in force there.
  • As regards CRZ areas in Udupi district, the proceedings from the Karnataka State Coastal Zone Management Authority (KSCZMA) from Bengaluru were expected to reach here within a couple of days. After that permits for sand extraction would be issued.
  • The latest CRZ survey had declared Kundapur and Byndoor taluks as critical areas. Hence no sand bars could be identified there. Even in Udupi, Brahmavar and Kaup taluks, nine sand bars had been identified after excluding critical areas, Ms. Francis said.
  • Meanwhile, the strike by owners of trucks transporting sand and construction materials seeking solution to the sand extraction problem entered the third day.
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