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news details
Out of 450 kanals, merely 5 kanals under use
Gulmarg Potato farm in shambles
3/9/2018 11:24:53 PM
Early Times Report

Srinagar, Mar 9: Agriculture Department has been caught on the wrong foot as its 450 kanals (70 acres plus) Potato Farm in Gulmarg has become a white elephant for the state exchequer. Reliable sources have revealed that out of 450 kanals of land allocated to potato farm mere 5 to 6 kanals of land is used for potato cultivation and rest of the land is unutilized inspite of being highly fertile. Details available with Early Times reveal that Government owned potato cultivation farm at Gulmarg was allocated around 70 acres (450 kanls plus) of land several decades back but mere 5 to 6 kanals are put into use as the employees of agriculture department who are posted there are not ready to work.
Sources say that salary bill of the employees of the potato farm is much bigger than the revenue generated from the farm. Proper accommodation is also available for the employees but due to lack of supervision from district office and local sub division office the whole farm is in shambles.
Early Times had earlier exposed the official mismanagement in District Horticulture Office Budgam. The department of horticulture according to official information spent more than 3.5 Crores on the salary of its 10 member staff posted in its fruit plant nursery cum orchard at Gopalpora from 2000 to 2016 , but could only generate revenue of mere 16.3 lac in an year. The 90 kanal Fruit Plant Nursery cum Orchard is in shambles at Gopalpora in central Kashmir's Budgam district. The orchard has become a cesspool due to official mismanagement and mis-governance. Sources say that employees of Potato farm Gulmarg are also not ready to work and the Agriculture Department is a mute spectator to this mis-management. Some local residents from Tangmarg while talking to Early Times have appealed Agriculture Minister to outsource the farm to a group of unemployed educated youth who can not only generate revenue for the Government , but will also earn dignified livelihood for themselves.
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