The Punjab government has instructed the staff of all agricultural boards, co-operation and related departments to ensure paddy crop stubble is not burned on lands owned and cultivated by them
K S Pannu, state nodal officer for an anti-stubble burning campaign, Tuesday said the state government has issued instructions to all departments to ensure that they themselves do not take part in straw burning.
“The employees have been directed to create awareness among farmers about the ill-effects of stubble burning as it causes irreversible damage to nature and human health,” he said.
In case any employee fails to comply with these directions then disciplinary proceedings would be initiated, he said.
The agriculture officials have also been mandated to report incidents of stubble burning across the state, he added.
As part of the state government’s programme to manage unusable paddy straw, without burning them, 24,315 subsidised agro-machines have been supplied to farmers, cooperative societies and custom hiring centres, officials said.
About 8,000 village-level nodal officers have been deputed to create awareness against stubble burning, he said.
Paddy is grown on 65 lakh acre in Punjab. After harvesting paddy, about 20 million tonnes of paddy straw is left in the fields before sowing for next Rabi crops, Pannu said.
According to estimates, 15 million tonnes of paddy straw is burnt by farmers for easy clearance of the fields, he said.
Recently, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh had written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, seeking Rs 100 per quintal as compensation for farmers who abstain from burning paddy stubble. PTI