Locust attack alert issued for Himachal

Shimla:  A locust swarm attack alert has been issued for Himachal Pradesh, an official spokesperson said.The high alert has been issued for four districts of Kangra, Una, Bilaspur and Solan of the total twelve districts of the state, he added. The state Agriculture Director R K Koundal stated that a massive swarm of desert locust has been destroying crops in adjoining states and may spread to Himachal Pradesh. Field functionaries have been alerted to keep continuous and constant vigilance on locust activity and get ready to control any locust emergency situation, he added.  Farmers have been asked to report any activity of locusts to nearby agriculture officers, he added.  Desert locusts usually fly with the wind at a speed of about 16 to 19 km per hour depending on the wind, he said. When a swarm settles down on a area, it should be quickly treated chemically,  mechanically beaten and buried by digging trenches, he added.  The director further said all field officers have been directed to create awareness among the farmers regarding locust attack.  No locust activity has been reported from any part of the state so far and necessary steps for locust control have already been taken, he added