GAURIPUR, July 21 - Once upon a time, Dhubri district was very rich in jute cultivation. But due to natural calamities, negligence of the government, high cost of production etc., cultivation of jute has drastically reduced. In spite of legitimate demand, not a single jute mill has been established. The Jute Corporation of India (JCI) has miserably failed to purchase jute by providing support prices. As a result, a section of non-Assamese traders purchase jute from the farmers at a low price causing heavy loss to the farmers of the entire district.
Inspite of all these odds, the farmers of greater Satrasal area like Jhaskal, Ranpagli, Pabarchara, Kherbari, Kaldeba, Ratiadaha, Belguri, Kanuri, Bishkhowa, etc., have taken up jute cultivation as a challenge with the hope of harvesting a bumper crop. The farmers residing along the Indo-Bangladesh and North Bengal border have started jute cultivation and expect a high yield this year.
Mansab Ali, Alimuddin SK, Jaisuddin SK and Maijuddin SK of Pabarchara village started jute cultivation on an experimental basis in 2/3 bighas of land and expected a high yield this year. They purchased seeds at Rs 60 per kg and sowed in one bigha land in the month of March and expect to harvest the crop later this month. They told this correspondent that the total cost of inputs in one bigha land is around Rs 5,000 and the expected yield may be around 6/7 mounds which they can sell at Rs 1600 for the new jute and Rs 2200 for the old one.
After harvesting they can easily cultivate sali paddy in their fields.
Subhash Sen, Anil Sen and Kartick Sen of village Kaldoba are also expecting a high yield of jute this year. Besides selling of raw jute they can easily sell the sticks of the jute as these are used as firewood.
But they may fail to sell their produce at reasonable prices as the JCI has stopped purchasing jute and government efforts in this direction are also said to be lacking. As a result, they have no option left other than to sell the jute to traders from North Bengal and remain deprived of getting reasonable prices for their product.