ALITAL (DADELDHURA), Dec 22: Through the effort of locals, mostly women, wide areas of government-owned land in Alital VDC-5 of Dadeldhura district left barren for years have been transformed into green stretches of abundant grass and masala plants. The sight is an inspiration to anyone who passes by.
Many hectares of land teem with mostly amriso plants and varieties of grass good for grazing and profitable in the market. The idea of planting amriso caught on with impetus from the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO).
“In the early months, we were able to sell Rs 50,000 worth of amriso seeds. Amriso has flourished here,” said Lalmati Buda, chief of Arugada Leasehold Forestry Organization. “This success highlights the determination of Alital VDC locals,” added Buda with pride.
The government had handed over the land to locals for planting and the contract ends only after 40 years. Local women from Sedi village in Alital VDC have grown various species of grass, masala plants and amriso on a large scale on the open land. Almost 63 households have had a hand in the cultivation.
Following this fruitful venture, the local women have purchased 15 jersey cows. “Having an ample supply of grass, we though keeping cows for milk would be a great idea. With this decision, locals have turned a profit selling the milk,” said Buda.
The grass planting spreads across 39 hectares. “It was beyond our imagination that this empty land would yield such a huge amount of grass. We estimate we´ll be able to sell Rs 200,000 worth of armiso seeds,” said Binita Buda, chief of Khanidada Leasehold Forest.
Extolling the work of Alital locals, Harishchand Singh, chief of FAO´s Dadeldhura office, said, “The shared efforts of the locals has yielded them this successful plantation. Today seed produced by us is being used in many parts of the country.”
Beside the overwhelming armiso output, they are cultivating various other species of grass like bay leaf, napier and dale grass.