State advocates lemongrass in lieu of poppy

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IMPHAL, Apr 15: IFCD & YAS Minister Letpao Haokip has asserted that the State Government has been working to provide viable alternative source of livelihood to people involved in poppy cultivation in a bid to wean them away from poppy cultivation.

Towards this end, the State Government has agreed in principle to replace poppy with lemon grass cultivation, Letpao Haokip said while motivating people involved in poppy cultivation to switch over to lemon grass cultivation for sustainable livelihood.

Letpao Haokip was addressing a gathering of villagers, church and village leaders and chiefs at Aihang village, Chandel district today during a felicitation programme held in his honour.
Considering the adverse environmental impact caused by poppy cultivation like clearance of large forest areas which leads to soil erosion etc, the Government is determined to provide alternative livelihood to poppy cultivators, he said while also extending invitation to the chiefs and leaders of the area to attend an awareness and sensitisation programme in this regard to be held shortly at Imphal.

The Minister said a mini-stadium would be constructed at Aihang village soon at a cost of Rs 50 crore under NLCPR. The Minister, prior to the programme, inspected the site for the mini-stadium.

Letpao also announced a slew of development schemes to be implemented in the area, particularly for the welfare of widows and women. Urging the people to be sincere in all their endeavours, the Minister exhorted all concerned to extend maximum cooperation to the development initiatives of the Government.

Village chiefs, church and social leaders from different villages of Chandel district attended the function.

Source: The Sangai Express

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