These movements will cease as swarms begin to breed
Locust Control Offices (LCOs) conducted control operations at 10 locations in districts of Jaipur, Dausa, Bikaner, Jodhpur, Barmer, Chittorgarh, Sri Ganganagar (Rajasthan) and Niwari and Shivpuri (Madhya Pradesh). State Department of Agriculture, Madhya Pradesh has also undertaken control operations at 5 locations located one each in districts of Satna, Balaghat, Niwari, Raisen and Shivpuri. No crop loss is reported.
As on 28th May, 2020 a total of 377 spots covering 53,997 hectares has been covered since Locust control operations started from 11th April, 2020. Districts covered by locust control are - Rajasthan – 22, MP – 24, Gujarat – 2, Punjab – 1, UP – 2, Maharashtra -3.
A Video Conference was organized today under the chairmanship of Secretary (Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmers Welfare) Shri Sanjay Agarwal with Principal Secretary (Agriculture) of all the states and UTs. In this meeting, all the states and UTs were informed about the latest status and control of locust attack. After this VC, an advisory has been issued in respect of locust to all the states/UTs and related SOPs has been shared.
On 27.05.2020 a letter was issued by the Union Home Secretary to the Chief Secretaries of all the states/UTs giving necessary instructions to streamline the inter-state movement facility for the personnel engaged in locust control works. Ministry of Home Affairs has included the following items and norms of assistance under SDRF and NDRF-
Item - Hiring of vehicles, tractors with spray equipments for spraying of plant protection chemicals for pest control; hiring of water tankers; and purchase of plant protection chemicals for locust control.
Norm- The quantum of assistance will be limited to the actual expenditure incurred on these items. However, expenditure should not exceed 25% of SDRF allocation for the year.
As per FAOs locust status Bulletin of 27th May, 2020, in Pakistan and Iran adults are forming groups and small swarms in spring breeding areas in Baluchistan, Indus Valley (Pak) and southern coast and parts of Sistan-Baluchistan. These infestations will move to the summer breeding areas along the Indo-Pakistan from Cholistan to Tharparkar. In India, Spring-bred immature adult groups and swarms continued to move east and to the central states of Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra. Much of these movements were associated with strong westerly winds from Cyclone Amphan. Several successive waves of invasions can be expected until July in Rajasthan with eastward surges across northern India as far as Bihar and Orissa followed by westward movements and a return to Rajasthan on the changing winds associated with the monsoon. These movements will cease as swarms begin to breed and become less mobile. Swarms are less likely to reach south India, Nepal, and Bangladesh.