Onions is cultivated all around the world. Each year in the rainy season farmers prepare their lands for onion cultivation.
It is said that 500 hundredweights of selected onion sets are required to cultivate two acres of land. It requires approximately Rs 200,000, according to farmers.
Farmers do not hesitate to spend lavishly on insecticides, herbicides, water and fertilizers with the aim of making their dreams a reality. But a fungi known as ‘disco’ has started affecting onion cultivation, destroying farmers’ hopes.
This fungi has rapidly spread in Kalpitiya area, and is affecting Puttalam as well. Moreover, this fungi is affecting onion cultivation in Viluka, Puttlam.
According to farmers, disco fungi spreads in one acre of land within only two days. It is difficult to precisely gauge how fast the fungi spreads, farmers added.
Farmers allege that the officials of the Puttalam Agrarian Services Center are reluctant to avert the damage caused by this fungi.
When we contacted the Puttalam Agrarian Services Center, an officer who requested anonymity said:
“Who made this allegation? I can’t respond to it because I’m not authorized to speak to media.”
Afterwards, officers had gone to inspect the affected areas and blamed farmers for speaking to media without informing them of the damage.