Farmers queue up to purchase high-yielding basmati seeds : The Tribune India

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Farmers queue up to purchase high-yielding basmati seeds

Farmers queue up to purchase high-yielding basmati seeds

Farmers wait for their turn to get seeds of 1847 basmati variety at IARI in New Delhi. Tribune Photo



Tribune News Service

Karam Prakash

New Delhi, March 2

Farmers from Punjab travelled hundreds of kilometres all the way to New Delhi to buy seeds of pusa basmati 1847, for its high-yielding capacity and in-built resistance to blast and blight diseases.

Farmers said they — to get the authenticated seeds of the this new improved variety of basmati — deemed it appropriate to buy it from the three-day Pusa Krishi Vigyan Mela (PKVM) 2023 being held at Indian Agriculture Research Institute (IARI), New Delhi.

The high-yielding variety is an improved version of the popular pusa basmati 1509. The variety has already become a hot favourite of farmers in Punjab.

Hundreds of Punjab farmers queued up since Thursday morning to get the seeds of pusa – which was launched last year. The IARI had given 1 Kg seeds per acre of the pusa 1847 to farmers for trial last year. It was the results of this improved variety — which is said to be highly resistant to the blast and blight diseases — that made the farmers to travel all the way from Punjab to New Delhi.

The farmers expressed that they had an apprehension of not getting the authenticated seeds of this variety from elsewhere except IARI. The IARI has already claimed that this variety would ‘revolutionise’ basmati cultivation.

The 35-year-old Hoshiar Singh of Lehal Kalan village of Sangrur, who had reached the Pusa Krishi Vigyan Mela, said, “This is a low-cost high yielding variety of basmati. We have received good feedback from the farmers – who had cultivated this variety last year.”

Another farmer said, “The input cost per acre has reduced by Rs 2,000 since we don’t have to spray pesticides as the variety is resistant to blight and blast diseases.”

Dr AK Singh, Director of, the Indian Agriculture Research Institute (IARI), said, “We distributed seeds to around 10,000 farmers on Thursday — most of them from Punjab. The yield of this variety is around 30 quintals per acre, which is higher than pusa 1509. This variety is resistant to bacterial blight and blast disease. Moreover, the stem of the plant of this variety is strong – which helps to sustain strong winds.”

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