IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis


20th December, 2022 Science and Technology

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  • Recently, an ICRISAT intern was awarded for developing bio-insecticide from ‘ramphal’ leaves.


  • Ramphal is a seasonal fruit which is also known as the as bullock's heart. It usually grows in the regions of Assam, Maharashtra, Gujarat, and West Bengal.
  • Apart from the great taste, it has many medicinal and therapeutic benefits.



  • Extracts from different parts of this plant have traditionally been used to cure conditions including dysentery and pediculosis (louse infestation).
  • Extracts from its leaves may be useful against three destructive pests — Pod borer, Green peach aphid and fall armyworm — with a mortality rate of 78-88 per cent, the research claimed. All these pests are known for incurring crop losses to farmers.
  • Note: The fall armyworm’s impact on Indian agriculture was considerable. So much so that the country had to import maize to meet the poultry and animal feed industry’s demand after the pest destroyed its maize crop in 2018.


  • The mortality rate of pests between 78-88 per cent in lab conditions is a very encouraging result.
  • In the next stage, the bio-pesticide must be tested in greenhouse and field conditions for its efficacy against different insect pests.
  • Bio-insecticides lead to healthy and pesticide-free produce in a cost-effective way.
  • This makes it a cost-effective pesticide for smallholder farmers and provides an additional source of revenue through the sale of fruits for human consumption and the leaves for bio-pesticide extracts.