Capt to Modi: Compensate farmers to stop stubble burning

Capt to Modi: Compensate farmers to stop stubble burning

 Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Thursday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking compensation for farmers for crop resident management to check stubble burning.

Stubble burning has triggered a major smog crisis in the northern belt of the country.

Singh also requested Modi to convene a meeting of chief ministers of the affected states along with the Union ministers for agriculture, food and environment.

Reiterating his earlier request, Singh sought Modi's intervention for arresting the problem of paddy straw burning by providing a bonus of Rs 100 per quintal as an incentive to compensate farmers to manage the crop residue scientifically.

Singh pointed out that most of north India, including the national capital, is currently in the throes of a pollution crisis, induced largely by burning of paddy straw in the paddy-growing areas of Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh.

The higher courts of the country and the National Green Tribunal have also taken cognizance of the matter.

"What is probably not being understood in proper perspective is that a problem which is essentially scientific and economic cannot be tackled through other means, including coercion", Singh said.

Scientific management and disposal of paddy straw entail a significant cost for the farmer and he (farmer) prefers the cheaper and easy solution of burning the crop residue, said Singh.

There are at present no technical or biological systems for managing this farm operation that is economically attractive to the farmer, he added.

Singh asked the prime minister to "release compensation by way of direct benefit transfer to farmers after due verification."

 

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