Rain brings temporary respite from farm fires in Punjab : The Tribune India

Rain brings temporary respite from farm fires in Punjab

Rain brings temporary respite from farm fires in Punjab

Photo for representation only. File photo



Tribune News Service

Patiala, September 25

Heavy rain across the state has brought a welcome relief from farm fires temporarily, but with the next crop season approaching fast, environmental experts have warned that stubble-burning incidents could rise to alarming level in the coming days. They say that farm fire cases can see a sharp jump after 10 days with farmers in Majha and Doaba starting to prepare their fields for the wheat season.

According to data collected by the remote sensing authority, the farm fire cases have come down in the past three days. The state has recorded 139 cases till date and the recent spell of rain means that farmers will wait for a few days more to set their stubble on fire.

A senior official said stubble-burning cases could be low because of wet fields, but their number was catching up with that of previous years. “Already farmers have announced to set fields on fire after being denied any financial assistance by the government for managing stubble,” he added.

Earlier this month, the Centre turned down the state government’s proposal of contributing to the cash incentive to farmers for not burning stubble. The state government had proposed to give Rs 2,500 per acre to paddy growers. It wanted that the Centre contributes Rs 1,500 per acre while Rs 1,000 per acre will be borne by Punjab and Delhi governments.

“Harvesting of early sown varieties has started in the border belt of Amritsar and Tarn Taran. Most farmers burn the residue because it is a quick and cheap way to clear the fields for the wheat crop, for which the window is often very short,” said a Punjab Pollution Control Board official.

#Agriculture #Doaba #Environment #farm fires #Pollution

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