The Goa government’s ambitious plan to set up an expansive horticulture estate has hit a roadblock due to the unavailability of such a huge land for the project, a minister said.
The scarcity of land for such a massive project has forced the agriculture department to re-think about it as it requires a plot of about 100 acres, he said.
The project was aimed at reviving the agriculture sector in the state.
The initial plan was to provide farmers one acre of land each in the proposed estate, and also all the required support and amenities for horticulture, state Agriculture Minister Vijai Sardesai told media.
“We are not able to get the required land for the project. We scouted many places but it didn’t help much. At present, we are in touch with a panchayat at Loliem village in extreme South Goa for the land,” he said.
The horticulture estate project was aimed at propelling the agricultural growth in the state, which is largely dependent on the tourism and mining industries for revenue and employment generation.
Chief Minister Manohar Parrikarhad initially suggested a piece of land spread over 200 acres at Surcorna in South Goa’s Quepem taluka, owned by the Goa Forest Development Corporation, for the project.
However, the chief conservator of forest refused to part with it, saying that it marked as a private forest.
“There is a tremendous potential and scope for growing different flowers in Goa, that is why the state government is keen on encouraging floriculture also,” Sardesai said.
Under the project, the state government had planned to help farmers in identifying markets for selling their produce, he said.
He said the Goa government had drawn inspiration for the project from a floriculture park at Talegao near Pune, which was developed by the Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation.