Ludhiana farmers confident of a good harvest despite scanty rains

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Ludhiana, Aug.19 (ANI): While farmers in different parts of the country are anxious due to delayed or deficient monsoon, farmers in Ludhiana are confident of reaping a good harvest despite everything.

Monsoon rains have been 29 percent below this year and affected cultivation of crops such as rice and sugarcane and triggering a sharp rise in food prices.

However, the farmers in Ludhiana have ensured that they utilise all the available resources to reap a good produce.

"Farmers in Punjab are really working hard and utilising all their resources available like use of generators to irrigate their crops. We, the farmers of Punjab are confident of reaping a good paddy harvest and will not allow the country to witness shortage of food grains in the country," said Pavittar Singh, a farmer in Ludhiana.

Farmers, however, say that the State and Central governments should acknowledge the hard work involved in agriculture by offering extensive subsidies to the farmers.

"The State and Central government should announce subsidies for us. We should be provided diesel on subsidised rates, and we are also confident of getting better price for our crop," said Jitenderpal Singh, another farmer of Punjab.

Meanwhile, agronomists and allied experts have also express optimistic views of high production in the Ludhiana area particularly after the good rains over the past fortnight.

"Fortunately, in Ludhiana and around Ludhiana, we have had plenty of rains lately. So, we should be okay but some other parts may not be," said M S Kung, Vice Chancellor, Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana.

Analysts also say that not withstanding an average 50 percent deficient rainfall in the state, the humid weather conditions could prove to be favourable for the paddy crop.

Monsoon rains have revived in the past few days, particularly in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, where the local government has declared a drought in the majority of the districts.

The weather office has forecast widespread rains in the key cane-growing areas in north and northwest India as well as the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, the main soybean-growing region.

On Monday (August 17) Union Agriculture Minister, Sharad Pawar had said that the country needed to raise planting of winter-sown crops and improve irrigation to make up for the damage to farms.

Monsoon rains are vital for country's summer-sown crops such as rice, sugarcane and soybeans because the majority of the farmers do not have access to irrigation facilities. By Karan Kapoor (ANI)

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