PROBLEMS FACED BY BETEL LEAF CULTIVATORS IN TRIBAL AREAS OF WEST JAINTIA HILLS DISTRICTS, MEGHALAYA
Betevine (Piper betel L) is known by its many names across the country and abroad. In the Indian subcontinent, it is known as pan in Hindi, Tambula in Sanskrit, Villayadela in Kannada, Vettilakkoti in Malayalam, Vettilai in Tamil, Tamalapaku in Telugu, Videch-pan in Marathi, Nagarbel in Gujarati and pan in Bengali, paana in Odia. In foreign languages, it is known as Tanbol in Arabic and Burg-e-Tanbol in Persian. It is a perennial climber cultivated for its leaf. Historically, the word pan in Hindi and other Indian languages is probably a derivative of the Sanskrit word „pan‟ meaning leaf. The leaves of the pan plant have been traditionally used for chewing. Pan chewing is considered as a good and cheap source of dietary calcium. It increases digestive capacity when used with lime. Besides, it neutralizes the acidity and acts as a blood purifier. Except above discussed problems betel leaf cultivators of the study area are also faces few other problems. The study area has no proper irrigation system from government side. Farmers have to arrange irrigation facility with their won interest. Betel leaf production also hampers many time due pest and fungus infection on betel vine and leaf. Moreover, Farmers are not aware about crop insurance. Most of them have no proper knowledge of applying fertilizer and pesticide in betel leaf cultivation.
Betal Leaf, Blood Purifier, Production, Fertilizer, Pesticide Problem, etc.