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Although effective pesticides have been identified to control fall armyworm, application of them may have adverse impact on the health of the people who consume the harvest of such crop-P.Harrison, Minister of Agriculture, Rural Economic affairs, Livestoc


The above views were expressed the Minister attending a discussion held at the Agrarian Insurance Board to explore the possibility of compensating the affected cultivations due to fall Army worm.

Further expressing his views on this matter, the Minister pointed out the seriousness of the damage caused to maize  Cultivations countrywide Although we were able to minimize damage to the harvest, those who are bent on finding fault want to know what kinds of chemicals are being applied. We can if it is necessary we are in a position to use highly effective pesticide for controlling the spread of the armyworm pest. However we have to think the people whose livelihood have been turned upside down as a large number of families are depending on maize cultivations – related occupation – both directly and indirectly. Therefore, we as   the representatives of those very people are responsive for controlling the fall armyworm menance, but not at the cost of the human lives or   if we abundened the maize cultivation even for a brief interval what will be the fate of those who engaged in this livelihood. We are compelled to give consideration to all those aspects. “the Minister stated.

Many critics come before media and trying to become heroes leveling various allegations against myself always finding fault with me while pointing all using finger at the Government. Yesterday on media person asked whether the question of fall armyworm is a conspiracy of the UNP. I told him that if so the real conspirator might be the former Minister Mahinda Amaraweera because I assumed office just ten days ago. The truth is that the fall Armyworms have earlier been spreading in India, Pakistan and many other African countries from which the Moth has eventually been migrated to Sri Lanka. Although we are not 100% sure of its eradication but take every possible effort at least to minimize damage caused by this fast breeding lava population popularly known as Fall Armyworm.

What we have to observe now is to identify and assess the damage caused to the maize farmer and, in case of complete loss of harvest, whether we can compensate the loss just like we compensate food crop under emergency catastrophic situation. Under no circumstances can we give up the cultivation. We must explore the every possible step to protect the maize cultivator extending our fullest support to him.

“Can we happy with our motherland as an agriculture country? Irrespective of party or colure all governments ruled the country since independence are responsible for this states of affairs as for as the agriculture is consumed. Even today many of the essential food crops such as Kurakkan, maize, green gram, cowpea, black gram and chillies are being imported. Let we are making Indian farmers rich. However no any other country in the world like Sri Lanka which subsidize the farmer community in many ways; all farms of subsidies like samurdha and fertilizer subsidy. But we have failed to achieve self sufficiency even in respect of essential food crop. It so something wrong may be with policy decision’s taken by us. We must go forward with a National Policy. Therefore now it is a time for us to formulate a National Policy in Agriculture to which myself and my officials are ready to be committed to.

Out of the majority of the country nearly 85% are contributing to agriculture even in a small  way, directly or indirectly of which 30%-35% are engaged in full-time basic, even though our failures in many a aspect.

I proposed that Director General of fisheries should take action to activate fishermen’s pension first and to rectify defects, if any, subsequently. So shall be the farmer’s pension too, which will be the responsibility of we well.

Mr.Panduka Weerasinghe, DG Agrarian Insurance Board and Mrs.Shirani Weerakon, Consultants to the Hon.Minister were present on this occation. 

Last Updated on Wednesday, 13 February 2019 09:03

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Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Economic Affairs Irrigation and Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development


Sri Jayawardenepura Mawatha,

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