332 farm fire cases in 5 days in Ludhiana district : The Tribune India

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332 farm fire cases in 5 days in Ludhiana district

Air quality turns ‘very unhealthy’, city 2nd most polluted in state

332 farm fire cases in 5 days in Ludhiana district


Tribune News Service

Nitin Jain

Ludhiana, May 15

As the current wheat harvesting season is over with a total crop over 2,45,200 hectares already harvested, farm fires have seen a sudden spurt in Ludhiana district during the past few days, official figures have confirmed.

The gravity of the spike could be gauged from the fact that as many as 332 of the total 408 stubble burning cases in the district have been reported during the past five days. This season’s tally so far was still the lowest-ever in the past nine years.

This has, however, not shown any positive impact on the air quality, which has turned from ‘poor’ to ‘very unhealthy’, making Ludhiana the second most polluted city in Punjab.

The sharp decline in the stubble burning cases this year was evident from the fact that Ludhiana had never reported less than 517 incidents of farm fires with the highest going up to 1,035 during the Rabi season in 2016.

Similarly, Ludhiana’s farm fires during the paddy harvesting in winters, popularly known as the Kharif season, had also never gone below 1,801 in 2023 and had touched the high of 7,697 in 2016.

A perusal of the data compiled by the Punjab Remote Sensing Centre (PRSC) here, a copy of which is available with The Tribune, reveals that Ludhiana has reported the maximum daily count of 107 farm fires this season on May 13, followed by 92 on May 12, 90 on May 14, 42 on May 10, and 1 on May 11.

However, not even a single incident of stubble burning was recorded on 25 days during the past 44 days of the harvest season, which began on April 1.

The day-wise count revealed that 7 farm fires were reported in the district on May 9, 13 on May 8, 15 on May 7, 1 on May 6, 5 on May 5, 4 on May 4, 7 on May 3, 14 on May 2, 3 on April 26, 1 each on April 24 and 2, with no incident of crop residue burning captured on other days since April 1.

The year-wise data showed that 889 farm fire cases were reported in Ludhiana in 2023, 950 in 2022, 517 in 2021, 1,019 in 2020, 1,035 in 2019, 730 in 2018, 875 in 2017, and 918 cases of stubble burning were captured in the district in 2016.

When it comes to other districts, as many as 7,828 cases of crop residue burning have been reported across the state from April 1 till May 14.

On Tuesday, as many as 1,024 farm fires were recorded across 23 districts in the state, with a maximum of 153 cases reported in Gurdaspur, and a minimum of 3 incidents were noted in Mohali.

Among other districts, Amritsar had reported 115 stubble burning cases on Tuesday, 26, Bathinda 31, Fatehgarh Sahib 21, Faridkot 21, Fazilka 25, Ferozepur 82, Hoshiarpur 39, Malerkotla 10, Jalandhar 24, Kapurthala 24, Mansa 6, Moga 85, Muktsar 33, Nawanshahr 32, Pathankot 19, Patiala 51, Ropar 7, Sangrur 7, Mohali 3, Sangrur 30, and Tarn Taran had captured 97 incidents of farm fires on May 14.

On the state level, Ludhiana stands on the 15th position in reporting the crop residue burning cases this season so far.

However, the air pollution in the state’s industrial and business capital has deteriorated from ‘poor’ to ‘very unhealthy’ category for the past few days with Ludhiana ranking second most polluted city in Punjab on Wednesday.

“We are running awareness, education and enforcement drives to sensitise all the stakeholders involved to check the incidents of stubble burning. We are committed to checking the sources of pollution to ensure a clean and safe environment for the residents,” said DC Sakshi Sawhney.

About The Author

The Tribune News Service brings you the latest news, analysis and insights from the region, India and around the world. Follow the Tribune News Service for a wide-ranging coverage of events as they unfold, with perspective and clarity.

#Agriculture #Environment #Farm Fires #Pollution


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