Pollution-free disposal of crop residues to be ensured: Minister

November 18, 2022

Punjab Minister of Agriculture Hussain Jahania Gardezi has said that it is important to survey the core paddy areas so that farmers are provided with modern machinery for the effective disposal of crop-residues to avoid creating pollution. The minister gave this suggestion while chairing a meeting over the disposal of crop residuals in the Civil Secretariat Lahore. He highlighted the importance of pollution-free agriculture and said that our government must ensure that farmers are given training and awareness in this regard.

The meeting was also attended by the Secretary Agriculture, Ahmad Aziz Tarar; representatives of the Judicial Water and Environment Commission, established for the control of smog; Hina Hafeez Ullah Ishaq, and Syed Kamal Ali Haider. During his briefing, Director General Agriculture Extension Department, Dr Anjum Ali said, “2269 cases of burning the paddy residue have been reported this year, while 3224 cases were reported last year.

This year the incidents of paddy burning were reported over 8,733 acres while last year they were 11,619.” He further informed the meeting that, “under the directions of the Lahore High Court, 702 FIRs (First Information Report) have been registered against farmers involved in burning the rice residues. Eighteen thousand village volunteer committees have also been set up to create awareness among the farmers.”

Director Agricultural Information, Muhammad Rafiq Akhtar, said, “the campaign to create awareness among the farmers is going on in full swing. We are utilizing all the resources at our disposal to create awareness among the farmers. Print, electronic and social media are being used at the same time for the same purpose. Almost 0.1 million copies of literature on the subject have also been already distributed among the farmers.”

The Minister further said that fines should be levied on those who are involved in burning the crop-residues on the basis of land-holding so that small farmers are not burdened. The meeting was also informed that water inspection is being carried out in Kasur, Chichawatani and Sahiwal to assess the amount of arsenic in the water so that the availability of clean water can be ensured in the said districts.

Credit : Independent News Pakistan-WealthPk