Wednesday, July 01, 2020

NS Tomar flags off helicopter with spray equipment for anti locust operations

New Delhi: Union Agriculture & Farmers' Welfare Minister, Shri Narendra Singh Tomar today flagged off a Bell Helicopter with spray equipment from a helipad facility at Gautam Buddh Nagar, Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh. The helicopter will fly for Air Force Station at Uttarlai, Barmer where it will be stationed initially and from there deployed for locust control in desert areas of Barmer, Jaisalmer, Bikaner, Jodhpur and Nagaur. The Bell 206-B3 helicopter will have a single-pilot operation, has a pesticide carrying capacity of 250 litres in one trip and can cover about 25 to 50-hectare area in one flight. An Empowered Committee finalized the firm for deploying one helicopter for aerial spray in the desert area after getting all the clearances from DGCA and Ministry of Civil Aviation.

Later, interacting with the media, Shri Narendra Singh Tomar said that after a long gap of 26 years, last year locust attack took place. Government of India and State Governments worked in coordination to effectively control it. It was estimated that this year there would be greater locust problem, but the Government is in full preparedness and all the State Governments have been alerted and are working in close coordination with the Centre. Deployment of machines, vehicles and manpower has been increased and concerned states are utilizing SDRF funds to tackle the problem. Drones have been used for the first time for locust control and today aerial spraying of insecticides with the use of helicopter has also been launched. He expressed gratitude to the Ministry of Civil Aviation for enabling the deployment of drones and helicopter. Shri Tomar informed that order has been placed for 05 numbers of aerial spraying machines from a UK-based company, and once these are received, they will be deployed in IAF helicopters and pressed into operation for locust control. Union Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmers' Welfare Shri Kailash Choudhary, Member of Parliament and former Union Minister Shri Mahesh Sharma, and Secretary, Agriculture Shri Sanjay Agarwal were also present.
30/06/20 Devdiscourse
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