Papaya farming proves a boon to farmers

Cultivation of papaya has changed the lot many farmers in Gopalganj district in recent days. Ful Mia is one of the fortunate famers. Jobless Ful Mia (45) had been leading a miserable life 10 years ago. Although he had passed HSC examinations from Dhaka Education Board, it could not help him much to get a job. He tried his luck in the domain of business and invested whatever amount of money he could manage in different sorts of business, but fortune turned to be hostile for him and he incurred huge losses. Sheer frustration played havoc with him. But still he did not lose heart.

He kept on venturing. At last, fortune smiled on him. He decided to cultivate papaya to eke out a living and accordingly he started papaya cultivation in the year 2001. More than a decade elapsed. Now he is a very successful papaya grower in Gopalganj district. At first he brought two and half acres of land under papaya cultivation and earned a substantial profits. From then onward he began to grow papaya in a big way. Full Mia's papaya project is located at Baghirkull village in Tungipara upazila of the district.

Ful Mia now sends papayas grown in his lands to different parts of the country, including Dhaka and Barisal. He earns at least Tk 9,000 per day by selling 150 maunds green and ripe papayas per day. He has become a model farmer of the district. Many other farmers of the district got inspiration from him, started cultivation of papaya and has become self-reliant. Ful Mia has employed seven people to work in his papaya project. He is expanding his project gradually. He has urged the authorities concerned to set up a papaya research centre in Gopalganj to provide training to the prospective cultivators.

He said, if any bank gives him adequate financial support, he will be able to bring 100 acres of land under papaya cultivation

Thai and Malaysian varieties of seeds of papaya are suitable for the soil and the climate of Gopalganj. Using these varieties he has achieved tremendous success, he added beaming with pleasure. This correspondent talked to an enterprising Ful Mia recently and came to know a lot of information regarding the papaya cultivation (The Independent, October 8, 2004).

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