To save the ground water the Punjab Pollution Control Board (PPCB) has proposed to allow the sowing of paddy only after June 25 instead of June 15. However, traders in the state have expressed apprehension that delay in plantation of paddy can lead to ‘corruption.’ The traders apprehend that late sowing of paddy can lead to late harvesting during the moisturising season and it can compel them to pay ‘moisturise cut’ of Rs 100 per quintal as last time they had to pay. They said that a decision in this regard likely to be taken at a three-day workshop of agriculture experts.The workshop is scheduled to be held from February 14 in the PAU campus at Ludhiana. The government will take decision after getting the opinion of the agriculture experts. Earlier, the time of paddy sowing use to be from June land later it extended to June 15. Now the PPCB has recommended the sowing of paddy from June 25. But many eyebrows have been raised by the traders and the farmers over this decision. A delegation of the traders had held a meeting with Secretary Food, Punjab, in this regard last week. Traders had lodged their protest as it may lead to corruption in procurement system. They said that procurement agencies had refused to purchase the crop as it was below standard.According to sources, approximately 25 to 30 per cent crop is having moisture. A number of farmers are also against sowing the crop late. Most of them have been sowing pusa-44 variety. This variety use to consume more water as compared to other varieties. However, the yield of this variety is much more as compared to other varieties. The PPCB is of the view that early sowing of paddy is not only put an extra pressure on soil but also consuming more groundwater. Notably, as many as 108 blocks in the state are under the ‘dark-zone’, because of the increasing area under paddy sowing.
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