Farmers lose interest in cotton, shift to moong : The Tribune India

Join Whatsapp Channel

Farmers lose interest in cotton, shift to moong

Grow crop only on 96,000 hectares against target of 2L hectares

Farmers lose interest in cotton, shift to moong

File photo



Tribune News Service

Archit Watts

Muktsar, June 8

The cotton-sowing season has ended on May 31 and the state government has failed to achieve its target to bring 2 lakh hectares under this cash crop.

Area was 1.69L ha last year

  • In 2023, the cotton crop was sown on 1.69 lakh hectares against the target of 3 lakh hectares
  • In 2022, the crop was sown on 2.48 lakh hectares against the target of 4 lakh hectares

As per figures procured from the state Agriculture Department today, just 96,358 hectares have been brought under cotton, which is the lowest-ever area in the state under this crop.

Once considered as “white gold”, this crop is mainly grown in four districts – Fazilka, Muktsar, Bathinda and Mansa.

In 2023, the cotton crop was sown in 1.69 lakh hectares against the target of 3 lakh hectares, which was the lowest ever as the area under cotton crop had never gone below 2 lakh hectares. In 2022, the crop was sown in 2.48 lakh hectares against the target of 4 lakh hectares.

In the 1990s, the state used to have more than 7 lakh hectares under the cotton crop. The cotton sowing starts immediately after the harvest of the wheat crop and lasts till the end of May.

Agriculture experts said the rains and hailstorm in September last year caused damage to the crop. Besides, the attack of pink bollworm at the last stage of the crop and lower crop prices were the major reasons to be blamed for the farmers not showing interest in the cotton crop this year, they claimed.

On the other hand, some officials of the Agriculture Department said they were engaged in election duties at the time when the farmers had to be motivated to sow cotton crop.

Gurnam Singh, Chief Agriculture Officer, Muktsar, said, “The per acre yield of the crop had decreased last year, prices remained low, thus the farmers were disinterested in sowing cotton crop. They have moved to ‘guaar’ and ‘moong’, which are, however, prone to whitefly and may cause trouble next year.”

Karanjit Singh, Chief Agriculture Officer, Bathinda, said, “The availability of subsidised solar connections for tubewells to farmers is also a reason behind the area decreasing under this crop. It is often observed that when farmers start getting water supply for irrigation purposes, they do paddy cultivation.”

Mamta Loona, Agriculture Officer, Fazilka, said, “The prices had remained between Rs 5,500-6,500 per quintal last year. Further, the Cotton Corporation of India (CCI) had stopped purchasing cotton. As a result, the area under this crop has decreased sharply.”

Cotton grower Gurdeep Singh from Daula village in Gidderbaha said, “Our village was once famous for its quality of cotton. However, over the years, the situation has changed and nobody is now willing to sow this cash crop.”

Repeated attempts to contact Jaswant Singh, Director, Agriculture, proved futile.

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.

#Muktsar


Top News

G7 vows to push India-Europe corridor

G7 vows to push India-Europe corridor

Talks with top leaders productive: PM Modi

Nurmahal woman shot dead in New Jersey, family with limited means faces bleak future

Nurmahal woman shot dead in New Jersey, family with limited means faces bleak future

Jalandhar youth who opened fire at cousins nabbed by police ...


Cities

View All