MASHKALAI-HARVESTING (with picture)
Mash-kalai yield makes char farmers happy
RAJSHAHI, Jan 29, 2018 (BSS) – After getting better yield of a high
yielding mash-kalai (black gram) variety on the fallow lands in vast char
(riverbed) areas, farmers become happy in both Rajshahi and Chapinawabganj
districts during the current harvesting season.
Acreage of the variety, BARIMASH-3, released by Bangladesh Agriculture
Research Institute (BARI), is gradually increasing as per acre yield is more
than the existing indigenous varieties.
Huge char lands of the Padma and Mohananda rivers, which remained fallow
after monsoon for a long, are being brought under the mash-kalai farming with
initiatives of Barind Station of On Farm Research Division (OFRD) of BARI.
The OFRD is conducting various farmers’ level motivational programmes to
expand farming of BARIMASH-3 in char areas.
Referring to the salient features of the newly released variety, Dr
Shakhawat Hossain, Senior Scientific Officer and Head of OFRD Barind Centre,
said the farmers are very happy over the yield and they are interested to
expand the acreage.
Golam Mostofa, a farmer of Baliadaying village, said the farmers once used
to cultivate indigenous mash-kalai varieties in a scattered way and many of
the lands would remain fallow.
Apart from this, yield of those varieties was very poor; farmers got
hardly one to one and a half mounds per bigha. After getting seeds from OFRD
and according to its guidelines, they have been cultivating the new variety
since last year, he added.
The farmers are very much interested to boost its farming in the years to
come as the variety’s yield is more than four to five mounds per bigha.
The mash-kalai production cost is also less. Cost of farming on one bigha
is around Taka 750 whereas its outcome can be Taka 7,000 to 8000.
Dr Shakhawat Hossain said huge land of the char area remained fallow after
receding floodwater every year. So, there is an enormous scope of improving
socio-economic condition of the local community through the best uses of the
fallow lands if those were brought under BARIMASH-3 farming.
He referred to various salient features of the cash crops. He said: “No
additional cost for fertilizer, pesticide and irrigation is needed to
cultivate this sort-term cash crop”.
Traditionally, the Rajshahi and Chapainawabganj districts along with their
vast char areas are very much popular for mash-kalai farming and its