Punjab misses May 15 deadline for cotton sowing for kharif season

: Punjab has missed the Might 15 deadline to finish cotton sowing, triggering fears of the lethal pink bollworm assault as a result of delay within the crop plantation for the second consecutive season.

The state couldn’t attain the midway mark of the goal of 4 lakh hectares or 10 lakh acres set for the 2022-23 Kharif season.

An inter-state consultative and monitoring committee of cotton-growing states of Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan had beneficial finishing sowing from April 15 to Might 15 as part of the pink bollworm infestation administration plan in Punjab.

Officers of the state agriculture division and district administrations blame the non-availability of canal water for delayed sowing.

Sowing in Fazilka and Muktsar was severely hit after Sirhind feeder canal witnessed a breach at Muktsar’s Thandewala village on Might 9. It was the second breach since April 1 on the identical web site and it adversely impacted farmers of the 2 districts.

Mansa deputy commissioner Jaspreet Singh stated the Bhakra canal provide remained suspended for annual upkeep for about 15 days from April 29.

“Fields are anticipated to get water from tomorrow. We hope that farmers will be capable of end sowing within the subsequent few days,” he stated.

In keeping with the information of the state agriculture division, 4 key districts of the semi-arid belt of south Malwa- Bathinda, Mansa, Fazilka and Muktsar- sowed the ‘white gold’ on 4.55 lakh acres until Might 14 towards the goal to sow cotton on 7.45 lakh acres by Might 15.

In Bathinda, the place it was deliberate to domesticate cotton on 2 lakh acres for the present season, farmers have been wanting 55% of the goal. Until Saturday, cotton was sown solely on 90,000 acres in Bathinda.

In opposition to this 12 months’s goal of 1.60 lakh acres, Mansa may full sowing on 45% or 88,000 acres. Muktsar is wanting 36% of the goal of 1.25 lakh acres because the district recorded cotton sowing on the 80,000 acres. Thus far, Fazilka has reported sowing on 1.97 lakh acres, which was 24% wanting the goal of two.57 lakh acres, for the present kharif season.

In keeping with the cotton agronomist at Punjab Agriculture College’s analysis heart’s at Abohar, Manpreet Singh, sowing ought to have been accomplished inside the stipulated time of Might 15 however canal water provide would hit the cotton productiveness.

“Farmers can resume sowing even until the primary week of June however it’s undesirable in view of final 12 months’s pest assault. It’s simple to regulate any pest infestation when the crop is similtaneously the expansion of the pest inhabitants. Furthermore, late sowing will result in lack of 1.5-2 quintal per acre yield,” he added.

In 2021, Punjab witnessed the primary ever widespread infestation of pink bollworm that crashed the cotton manufacturing drastically.

Within the final kharif season, Punjab produced 22 lakh quintals of cotton, whereas, throughout 2020-21 interval, all seven districts of the state produced over 49 lakh quintals of the white gold.

Officers stated after final season’s pest assault, a piece of farmers have been hesitant to sow cotton however the highest ever charge of as much as 13,000 per quintal motivated them to go for it once more.

Harinder Sidhu, who cultivates cotton on 32 acres in Muktsar, stated the farmers have been reeling underneath the specter of a loss as a result of mismanaged canal community.

“Sirhind feeder is the lifeline of cotton-growing areas of Muktsar and Abohar belt in Fazilka as groundwater within the area is unfit even for irrigation. Our farms are mendacity vacant and irrigation authorities are to be blamed for the mismanagement,” he stated.

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