India: Punjab government compensates cotton farmers for Pink Bollworm attack

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28 March 2022, Mansa: Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann announced that Punjab farmers incurring any loss from a natural disaster would be duly compensated prior to completion of assessment.

Addressing a gathering during function organised to distribute compensation to farmers who have lost their crop due to Pink bollworm attack, the Chief Minister said that it is unfortunate that food growers get the compensation after a long and troublesome process of assessment of crop loss. He said that this will be reversed and now farmers will get compensation prior to assessment.Last year due to pink worm attack farmers have suffered huge loss in cotton belt of state but they had not received compensation. In Mansa district alone 1.36 lakh acre crop of 56,372 farmers was destroyed due to attack and now these farmers have been compensated worth Rs 231 crore at Rs 17,000 per acre.

The Chief Minister further mentioned that in Malwa belt of Punjab, farmers had lost their cotton crop not because of attack by white fly and pink bollworm, but it was the supply of poor quality seeds and pesticides that was chiefly responsible for this huge loss. He announced that a thorough enquiry will be conducted in this regard and strict action will be taken against those who had supplied these spurious seeds and pesticides to farmers. 

Promising to make agriculture a profitable venture, the Chief Minister said that the state government is in talks with the experts of various universities so as to introduce new technology for motivating the farmers to cultivate high profit yielding varieties of crops. He said that agriculture is the backbone of Punjab’s economy and the state government will leave no stone unturned to make it a profit making occupation. Mr Bhagwant Mann said that budgetary provision will be made to provide funds to Agriculture University for new research and high quality seeds of various crops.

Highlighting the importance of water, the Chief Minister said that it is the only available natural resource of the state. He bemoaned that for producing one kilogram of rice about 3800 litres water of state is wasted. Mr Bhagwant Mann urged the farmers grow less water guzzling crops as the fertile land of Punjab can produce any crop.

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