Ludhiana, May 3 (UNI) Cotton sowing has suffered a set back in Punjab's south western districts (Malwa Belt) due to the availability of canal water for irrigation purposes.
Punjab Agriculture University's (PAU) district extension specialists in a feed back to the University's Director of extension education Dr S S Gill have pointed out that farmers in the Malwa belt have not been able to follow recommended practices for sowing cotton. The reason for this delay is attributed to non- availability of canal water for irrigation purposes.
Dr Gill, who chaired a meeting of the field staff held here yesterday to review the problems and needs of the farmers, was told by the district extension specialists of Bathinda and Faridkot that so far only five per cent to ten per cent area had been sown under cotton due to non- availability of irrigation water. Even this sowing had been done in a staggered manner because whatever water was available, it was in driblets and the underground water was blackish making it which was unfit for human consuption and injurious to crops.
To a pointed question by Dr Gill , the specialists from south west districts also said that there was no truth in the report that some farmers had developed any particular allergies because of sowing BT cotton.
At the meeting, PAU's, head of the department of soils and other scientists said that the farmers must be advised not to aply bio- fertiliser to non leguminous crops as this did not help in the dissolution of phosphorus.
The meeting was attended by various heads of departments, research scientists and directors of PAU regional research stations and Krishi Vigyan Kendras.
For the benefit of the participants, two power point presentations were also made at the meeting. One was on irrigation and use of tensiometer by Dr S S Kukal and the other was on climate change and its impact on wheat by agro-meteorologist Prabhjyot K Sidhu.
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