Farmers in the district are passing their days in deep frustrations due to widespread attack of stem borer, locally known as majrapoka, on their Aman croplands.
The farmers said they have been spraying pesticides since the beginning of the pest attack around two weeks back, but it is not working.
Frustrations have gripped the farmers of Nachole and Sadar upazilas as they are fearing heavy losses this year due to the increased production cost, pest invasion and irrigation expenses in absence of adequate rain.
This time, some 51,740 hectares of land have been brought under Aman cultivation exceeding the target of 48,900 hectares with a production target of 1, 35,828 metric tonnes.
The farmers, however, alleged that they are not getting any support or suggestion from the Department of Agriculture (DAE) office here and they are now using pesticides buying that from local markets to save their crops which have not proved effective yet.
Abdul Salam, a farmer of Amnura Math in Sadar upazila, said he cultivated Aman paddy on 10 bighas of land.
Salam said he has already sprayed pesticides four times but did not get any benefit while agriculture officers are neither visiting their croplands nor giving any advice to protect their crops despite repeated requests to deal with the problem.
Khairul Islam, a farmer of Sadar upazila, said he cultivated Aman paddy on over 3 bighas of land and he was expecting good yield this time, but now it looks uncertain due to the massive pest invasion.
Admitting the pest attack on the paddy fields, Monjurul Huda, deputy director of Chapainawabganj DAE, said there is nothing to be worried for the Aman growers as the croplands could be easily protected with the balanced use of pesticides and fertilizer.
He said the pest invasion is unlikely to affect their harvest as they are giving suggestions how to deal with the problem and use pesticides.