Shivamogga: A delegation of BJP leaders led by former Chief Minister B. S. Yediyurappa met with Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar on Wednesday October 19 in New Delhi, asking that the Centre send a team to the State to research the leaf spot disease that is damaging areca crops.
A financial package for the impacted growers was also demanded in the meeting. The delegation included Sagar MLA Haratalu Halappa, MP B. Y. Raghavendra, and Home Minister Araga Jnanedra. In his memorandum to the Minister, Yediyurappa claimed that Karnataka is the greatest producer of arecanuts in the nation, and contributes 68 per cent of all arecanut cultivation land and 80 per cent of all arecanut production.
“More than five million people are dependent on the crop and it is grown on 5.02 lakh hectares of land in the state. Arecanuts are grown on over 1.02 lakh hectares of land in the Shivamogga District. Arecanut production provides for more than 60 per cent of the district’s economy. Climate changes have made diseases including Ganoderama wilt, fruit rot, and leaf spot, which have resulted in a significant decrease in yield,” he said.