Many landless farmers are attaining solvency through cultivation of watermelon in different char areas adjacent to the Atrai river of Patnitala upazila under Naogaon district.
Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) sources said, "Once the char areas under Nirmail, Matindar, Krishnapur, Patichara, Nazipur, Ghoshnagar, Amair and Shihara unions of the upazila remained uncultivated round the year."
"But, landless peasants of the areas these days are changing their fates through cultivating the popular fruit in the charland. Different varieties of watermelon including Glory, Jambu, Orion and Banglalink are now being cultivated in the areas," the sources added.
One Rampal Chandra of upazila's Chhoto Chandpur area said, "We received excellent output of watermelon as the weather condition was suitable from the beginning of the cultivation and price of the fruit in the market is also satisfactory."
"We had to spend only Tk 25,000 to Tk 30,000 to cultivate watermelon on each acre of land while we are getting profit of around Tk 0.4 million per acre," he added.
Upazila Agriculture Officer Prokash Chandra Sarker said, "Some five hectares of charland were brought under watermelon farming by the landless peasants of the upazila this season."