RAJSHAHI, Apr 07: Black cumin (Nigella Sativa) - a versatile spice bearing characteristics of curing various diseases for more than 2,000 years, is being successfully cultivated by a farmer in Raninagar upazila of greater Rajshahi district.
Black cumin which is called 'Kalojira' in Bangla is an essential ingredient of spice in our regular curry. It is not produced in the country that is why it is imported from abroad and is a prized spice not only for its price but also for its utility. The spice is also known as elixir of all diseases.
Liton Khondker, son of Khandker Nazim Uddin of Chalk Monu village under Kashimpur union in Raninagar upazila, has cultivated black cumin in his field during the current season. The grower said he cultivated the seed as an experimental basis in his field.
He said the cultivation of black cumin is less costly and, so far the condition of the plants indicates there will be a bumper production of the crop. He hoped, within a short time the harvesting and thrashing of the plant will be completed and the spice will be ready for sell in the market. With the cooperation from the department of agriculture, he has cultivated the black cumin in 10-decimal of land.
DAE, Rajshahi, sources said the black cumin has a widespread use in the country but the cultivation of black cumin is not seen to be practised by the farmers of the country. In Ayurvedic, Unani and Kabiraji treatment, there is a wide use of black cumin and the oil of black cumin. The black cumin enriched with phosphate, iron, carotene and Phosphorus, black cumin has been used as an elixir of almost all diseases for hundreds of years. At the early winter, the seed of black cumin is sowed in the field and within next three months, the black cumin becomes ready to harvest. It takes around Tk 3,000 for the cultivation of one bigha of black cumin and the production of black cumin seed from the field is around 120 kg to 140 kg. In the local market, a maund (40 kg) of black cumin is being sold at Tk 9,000.
SM Golam Sarwar, upazila agriculture officer of Raninagar, said Liton was a successful black cumin cultivator in the country. He introduced cultivation of this prized spice for the first time at the plain alluvial land in the country though the crop is usually cultivated in char lands. He said, many people of the upazila are being interested to cultivate Black cumin in their field by following the success of Liton. He expressed the hope that the cultivation of this spice will be increased gradually in the upazila and other districts of the country.
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