Chandigarh, May 7 (FN Agency) In order to promote Direct Seeding of Paddy (DSR) in Punjab, the Department of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare conducted online discussions with the farmers and listened to their grievances. During the deliberations, Additional Chief Secretary (Development) Anirudh Tewari directed the Agriculture Department to achieve the set targets by forming clusters with the help of progressive farmers and further directed the officers/staff of Agriculture Department personally to motivate the farmers to adopt DSR.
Notably, As many as 700 farmers from all the blocks of the state participated through the offices of the Agriculture Department, during which the farmers had open discussions with the experts of Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana and the Department of Agriculture on DSR. Meanwhile, Commissioner Agriculture Dr Balwinder Singh Sidhu said that the ground water level in the state was continuously depleting and due to shortage of labour amid Covid-19 pandemic, farmers should sow paddy directly in the coming season.
He also informed that this year, the government was also providing special power supply from May 25 to June 2 for this purpose. Meanwhile, Director Agriculture, Dr Sukhdev Singh Sidhu said that last year about 5 lakh hectares in the state was brought under DSR and the target has been set to bring 12 lakh hectares under this method in this year. He further said that to promote this method, a camp must be organized in a cluster of 10 villages in the state where apart from the scientists, the successful farmers can also openly share their their views. He also said that DSR method not only saves water but also absorbs more rain water in these fields. During the meeting, Dr Makhan Singh Bhullar, head of Crop Science Department, PAU, and Crop scientist Dr Jasbir Singh Gill gave technical inputs to the farmers on DSR. Dr Nina Singla, Head, Department of Biology, PAU, Ludhiana also gave expert opinion on the prevention of rats in this method.