In midst of the nationwide lockdown to stop the spread of COVID-19, the Haryana government has decided to buy maize and pulses at the minimum support price (MSP) in its first firm crop diversification push. Recently, Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar announced this while launching the ambitious Mera Pani Meri Virasat scheme during his address on the Haryana Aaj programme on Wednesday.
Stressing on water saving, Khattar said, “Under the Mera Pani-Meri Virasat scheme, farmers switching over to an alternative crop in place of paddy during this season will be given an incentive of Rs 7,000 per acre.”
What is Mera Pani-Meri Virasat scheme?
Chandigarh Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar has launched the Mera Pani-Mera Heritage Scheme. Emphasizing the need for farmers to adopt crop diversification, he said that incentives amounting to Rs 7,000 per acre would be given to farmers who quit paddy cultivation in areas covered by the dark zone.
As per reports, Haryana produces near 68 lakh metric tonnes (LMT) of paddy, including over 25 LMT of basmati. The crop diversification drive of the BJP-JJP coalition government comes ahead of the paddy transplantation season that begins on June 15.
According to reports, the land under paddy transplantation across the state is about 32 lakh acres while around 30 quintal paddy (parmal) is produced in one acre. Moreover, a farmer earns around Rs 30,000 per acre after excluding the input cost that is over Rs 20,000 per acre.
Govt to Give 80% Subsidy for Micro-Irrigation
The state government is giving 80% subsidy to the farmers who have adopted micro-irrigation and drip irrigation system along with growing alternative crops in place of paddy.
CM has urged the farmers to sow crops which require less water than paddy, such as maize, arhar, urad, guar, cotton, bajra, til and grim moong (Baisakhi moong), to ensure the availability of water for future generations.
Which Areas are considered as Dark Zone?
As per reports, 36 blocks of the state have become dark zones where the ground level water depletion rate has doubled in 12 years. It means that where the groundwater level was earlier at 20 metres, it has now depleted to 40 meters.
Apart from these blocks, if the farmers of the remaining blocks also want to stop sowing paddy, they can apply for the incentive amount by giving information in advance.
SOURCE: Krishi Jagran