SHIKARPUR: Locust swarms again descended in Shikarpur district on Monday, devouring crops and causing losses for farmers.
According to sources, the area people are trying to get rid of the locusts on their own in order to save their crops from being damaged.
“Causing damage to standing crops and green pastures, including newly sowed saplings, vegetables and fruits, the pests covered the skies across Madeji, Khanpur, Lakhi, Zarkhail, Mian Sahib, Sultankot, Garhi Yasin and adjoining areas”, sources said.
The farmers have blamed the Sindh Agriculture Department for not taking concrete measures to save their crops from the attack of locusts. People said crops standing on hundreds of acre were destroyed by the swarms of grasshoppers in several villages.
The disgruntled farmers have now demanded of the agriculture department to carry out aerial spraying in the district so that future loss to crops could be minimized.
On 6 March, Shah had asked for prime minister’s attention towards the fumigation campaign against the advancing locust. However, he said despite assurances no cooperation has been extended to the province so far.
Murad Ali Shah warned that the crops in the province could come under huge damage if the spray campaign was not initiated in the province instantly and said he urgently required six aircraft and pesticides for aerial spray in the affected areas.
Referring to the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization forecast, the Sindh CM said that the locust attack in 2020 would be much harsher as compared to the last year 2019.
According to Murad Ali Shah, over 990,000 acres of desert land was invaded by locusts last year, while crops on over 160,000 acres of land were destroyed.