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Field day on “Arka Rakshak-triple disease resistant tomato F1 Hybrid organized in Puri, Odisha

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ICAR-IIHR-Central Horticultural Experiment Station, Bhubaneswar organized field day on “Arka Rakshak-triple disease resistant tomato F1 Hybrid” on 27-02-2018 at Kakatpur village, Puri District, Odisha, where in the tomato hybrid Arka Rakshak has been raised by a progressive vegetable grower Mr. Prakash Biswal. At the outset, Dr. P. Srinivas, Principal Scientist welcomed the gathering and briefed about the objectives of field day. Dr. P. Naresh, Scientist spoke on advantages of triple diseases (bacterial wilt, early blight and tomato leaf curl virus) resistance, high yield and good postharvest life of the hybrid Arka Rakshak. Dr. Meenu Kumari, Scientist explained about the nutritional management, drip irrigation and other horticultural practices to be followed to reap full potential of the tomato hybrid.

The farmers gathered at the venue visited the fields and appreciated the heavy fruiting of tomato and the excellent quality of the fruits. Interacting with the farmers, Mr. Prakash Biswal expressed that Arka Rakshak had not only showed high resistance against viral diseases but there is no incidence of bacterial wilt too. He said that farmers of this hot and humid region have withdrawn the cultivation of tomato and brinjal due to high incidence of bacterial wilt (severe bacterial wilt prone area). The absence of bacterial wilt in otherwise hotspot area for the disease incited high interest of the farmers towards the variety. Mr. Biswal has reported to have harvested up to 25 kg per plant under such conditions. Several farmers have expressed their desire to cultivate Arka Rakshak in during Aug-Sept. A total of 35 progressive farmers from different nearby villages participated in the event. Dr. G C Acharya, Head, ICAR-IIHR-CHES, Bhubaneswar, called upon the gathered farmers to take up cultivation of a range of high yielding improved and hybrid varieties of fruits and vegetable developed by ICAR-IIHR. He specifically recommended tomato hybrids Arka Rakshak and Arka Samrat in the coastal regions of Odisha where vegetables are being cultivated in a big way. He appreciated the efforts made by Mr. Prakash Biswal in raising a good crop of Arka Rakshak. Dr. P. Srinivas, Principal Scientist coordinated the organisation of the field day.