M A I N   N E W S

Showers good for Kharif crop, will thwart attack of pests: Experts
Sarbjit Dhaliwal/TNS

Chandigarh, August 22
Moderate to heavy rain during the past 24 hours in almost all parts of this region has brought smiles back on the faces of the disappointed farmers of Punjab and Haryana.

They were saddened by the absence of a good widespread spell of rain in the region since the beginning of monsoon.

Punjab Agricultural University’s Agronomy Department head Gurmeet Singh Buttar said that rain would not only prove useful to various kharif crops, but it would also suppress the attacks of various pests.

The attack of white fly on crops would be curtailed to some extent, he said. However, prolonged cloudy weather could prove harmful to the crops, he added. Met officials said that rain was widespread in this part of the country. “Monsoon is fully active in the region and the current spell of rain will last for some more days,” said a senior official of the local meteorological office.

Narnaul and Hisar region got about 70 mm rainfall during the past 24 hours. As much as 40 mm of rain was recorded in Jagadhari, Chhacharuli in Haryana and Balanchar, Ropar, Anandpur Sahib, Amritsar areas of Punjab.

Reports of moderate to heavy rainfall have also come from Patiala, Ambala, Sirsa, Faridabad, Palwal, Loharu, Sangrur, Jalandhar, Nawanshahr, Khanna and Ludhiana. Even the Mansa belt of Malwa region in Punjab also recorded good rainfall this morning.

Earlier, the monsoon had by and large skipped this part of the state. In City Beautiful Chandigarh, 30 mm rain was recorded today. The weather office said that as a result of the rain in the past 24 hours, the rain deficit in Punjab has come down to 61 per cent and in Haryana to 56 per cent.

Earlier, the rain deficit in the two states was above 70 per cent. In City Beautiful, it has come down to 24 per cent.

Punjab’s Director Agriculture Mangal Singh Sandhu said that the current spell of rain would help improve the yield level of various kharif crops. It would also reduce the pressure on various resources like tubewells, which had to be operated non-stop due to deficient rain in the region in the earlier weeks of August and July. Against a target of 27.80 lakh hectares, paddy has been transplanted in 28.10 lakh hectares in Punjab, which is perhaps only state in the country to exceed the paddy transplantation target.

Cotton has been sown in 4.95 lakh hectares and sugarcane in 84,000 hectares. Maize has been sown in 1.35 lakh hectares. “We will achieve our production target in all crops,” said Sandhu. 





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