Ludhiana (Punjab) [India], October 19 (ANI): Cases of paddy straw burning have dropped significantly in Punjab's Ludhiana district, as per the data provided by Crop Residue Burning (CRB) Information and Management System.
The number of fire incidents so far have dropped to 2446 as compared to 76,590 in the previous year, it said
The major contributor to the change is believed to be the Centre and state government's ardent efforts to both educate and subsidise the farmers on stubble burning.
The farmers here were also provided with new rent-free machines to tackle the problem of stubble burning.
Deputy Commissioner (DC) of Ludhiana VK Sharma said, "This time due to government and collective effort cases of burning straw are fewer. As of now, 5400 machines are given to many farmer groups, primary agriculture society etc for proper management of paddy straw. We're raising awareness among farmers via various mediums."
He also informed that the district administration made farmers of 930 villages out of the 950 villages in the district promise to keep the environment clean on October 2 this year.
"Now, instead of burning stubble, the farmers shed it to ground that has benefitted in controlling the air pollution as well as increasing soil fertility. If this continues, the famers may not burn stubble in the future," he added.
Farmers, on the other hand, said that they too do not prefer burning the paddy straw because it harms them.
A farmer of Budan village Karte Inderpal Singh said, "In order to keep the environment clean, and considering the health of all, we multure the stubble (grind to powder form) and then mix it with the soil to help make it nutritious for the next crop. We have never burnt stubble."
"I personally request all the farmers to not burn stubble, and several farmers are now following the lead. The government should also compensate the farmers to further encourage them to refrain from it," he added.
"To keep the environment clean, we're not burning paddy straw. It can be used as fertilizer and fodder. Last year also there were fewer cases," Jaswinder Singh Rana, the sarpanch of Singpura village added. (ANI)