Friday 9 March 2012

JATROPHA: the Local “KERANG” is the bio fuel yielding plant

        I have played with local KERANG but never imagined that it was in fact the JATROPHA, the bio fuel yielding plant. I’ve played with JATROPHA during my childhood days by making air bubble through the latex of JATROPHA stem.
       The difference at that time being the concept of Bio fuel or aspect of Bio fuel and species name was not known to me and others in my area.”
        It was until 2005, the concept of Bio fuel and cultivation of JATROPHA for production of JATROPHA seeds to the purpose of bio fuel etc had been known to me and few others of my area.
        The forest department of Tripura is known to have taken up the issue and created wave by popularizing the concept through plantation of JATROPHA in the forest lands of the state.
         Attention of the people of the state were sought on this new concept, in the recent past, there had been discussion of new concept, the JATROPHA cultivation for profit making.
        JATROPHA, locally known KERANG used to be in the roadside, in the homestead land for some unknown reasons or at best for live fencing however, by the time, this new aspect of Bio fuel through JATROPHA is in the limelight, rural JATROPHA the local KERANG is already in dwindling condition.
       In several areas including in our areas too there is no more JATROPHA; children did not have the chance to play with the KERANG, the Botanical Jatropha as it does not exist any more in most of the other areas too.
        However, the way JATROPHA has created hype in the state and also in the mind of the people did not last long and as it is not reflected in the field level through mass participation and adoption by the people. In our areas, I have not seen JATROPHA coming up in the farmers’ field as well as in forest lands too.
        Whatever may be the news and views around JATROPHA cultivation but in reality it is yet to take off in the state in the expected level.
      Of course, what could be the reason of remorse by the people for not showing desired level of importance and adopting the new aspect are not clarified by any agency either government or other private concern.
       It was promoted that this Bio fuel yielding Plant JATROPHA would be making huge difference in the following ways:
• Rural economy would be improved that is when rural people accept and adopt the JATROPHA cultivation in their land or as the case may be.
• Land, which otherwise remain barren or fallow would be put to use for effective resource utilization thereby earning a good source of income by rural people.
• In general, dependency on fossil fuel would be minimized when bio fuel yielding plant, Jatropha is cultivated in the large scale in field level and produced to the requirement.
        But in spite of all these, JATROPHA remain in the despondency, now, there is no outcry, and no interest to be seen amongst the people on the new concept.
      What was presumed is, any new concept or technique would be taking the root once the following apprehensions are clarified?
• Suitability for cultivation( it is already proven that it is suitable)
• Acceptability by the people
• Profitability of the new concept
• Assured market facility
      Now, what is to be seen is whether the above criteria were analyzed before being tried in mass level for paving the way for the JATROPHA cultivation in the state.
                                           Agritangkol dated 22.02.2012

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