Dechen Dolkar

Paro is known for its vast and fertile land where farmers grow rice, the main food crop. Untimely rain, particularly during harvest time, damages rice besides shortage of labour is a concern close to farmers.

The Bhutan Tendrel Party (BTP) knew it well. Campaigning in Paro for the general round, the party if elected, is promising to provide combine harvesters and rice transplanters at subsidised rate during rice plantation and harvest time.

BTP President, Pema Chewang who was in the Lamgong-Wangchang constituency said that the party recognises the challenges Parops face during the paddy plantation and harvest season. “To enable timely transplantation and harvest, we will provide machinery at a subsidised rate,” the President said.

During the recent paddy harvest in Paro, delays occurred due to an increased demand and a limited number of combine harvesters. The President also said that the BTP would address the issue of labour shortage by facilitating labour import from India during paddy plantation and harvest. This initiative, he said, is aimed at enhancing agricultural production by ensuring a sufficient workforce.

The President said that due to labour shortage, most of the paddy land was left fallow. However, the President clarified that the imported labour would be for short durations and would need to be sent back.

In addition to addressing agricultural challenges, the President said such initiatives would contribute to improved annual household income. The party pledged to increase the average annual household income by seven-fold; from the existing Nu 406,134 to Nu 3 million by the end of 2029.

During the campaign, the President also said that the party will also provide a one-time home loan to construct a house in rural areas at concessional interest rates. He said that all their pledges are achievable and would bring long-term benefits to the people.