IEP Chandigarh, November 11
The Punjab government led by Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann took various measures and initiatives to curb stubble burning, these efforts have paid off as stubble burning cases have reduced by about 30 percent compared to last year. Chairing a high level meeting with the officials of the Agriculture, Science and Technology Environment, PEDA and deputy Commissioners, the Punjab Chief Secretary Mr. Vijay Kumar Janjua directed to encouraged and motivate the farmers as much as possible not to burn stubble. He also asked the deputy commissioners to honour the farmers who have contributed for this noble cause in curbing stubble burning.
During the meeting, the Deputy Commissioners presented their view that every fire incident shown by the satellite system is not correct, whereas the fact is that the straw baling has been done on a large scale in the state and the farm where the small incidents of fire happened near the vats after baling were reported as full cases of fire incidents by the satellite system.
During the meeting, the Chief Secretary issued directions to the Agriculture Department to ensure that the money for the subsidized machinery is sent into the accounts of beneficiaries by November 30. Along with this, the Chief Secretary Vijay Kumar Janjua issued instructions to the Department of Agriculture to prepare complete data plan about the types of machines as required at the block level for stubble management. Along with this, he said that Panchayats and Cooperative societies should be provided maximum machines for stubble management.
Regarding the suggestions given by the Deputy Commissioners that large horsepower tractors are required to run the straw harvesting machines, on which the banks do not give loans, the Chief Secretary asked the concerned department to tie up with the banks to get loans for big horsepower tractors. In the meeting, it was also discussed that the industry is helping the state government and farmers for the straw management, therefore the issue should be raised with the center to provide balers on subsidy to the industries.
Issuing strict directions on this occasion, the Chief Secretary said that action should be taken against the firms which did not repair the damaged machinery of the farmers during stubble handling. The guidelines were also issued to the Deputy Commissioners to take immediate steps to handle the straw collected for the use in the brick kilns as the use of straw in the brick kilns will start from May 1, 2023.