The best time to sow wheat crops is about to end in Punjab but most farmers couldn’t sow a single acre, courtesy too much moisture in the fields, and the dense smog from crop stubble burning has prevented the sun from breaking through. The farmers are apprehensive that late sowing of crops will adversely affect the yield but they are left with no option. According to the Agriculture Department the best wheat sowing time in the state is from October-end till November 15 (after this period yield gets affected). Officials confirmed that wheat sowing was set back because of the dense smog due to stubble burning by farmers, Indian Express reported.
A Punjab farmer Harjinder Singh owns 15 acres land in Tanda village of Khadoor Sahib in Tarn Taran district. After paddy harvesting he sows wheat on 10 acres and green peas (matar) on five acres. By now last year, and in previous years, he had completed the sowing for wheat. Harjinder concedes that he was among the thousands of farmers who burnt crop stubble to prepare his fields for wheat sowing quickly. Now he is skeptic about late sowing.
Director Punjab Agriculture Department Dr J S Bains said that just 40 per cent sowing had so far been completed. According to Bains, the fields have to be dry before the sowing, to top it all there is prediction of rain, while smog will clear, there will be a further delay in sowing, and it may cause danger to the already sown crop. According to records, by this time last year, farmers across Punjab had sown 65-70 per cent of the wheat. Punjab Arhtiya Association President, Ravinder Singh Cheema also agreed that sowing got delayed due to smog from field fires.