Punjab, Haryana to assess crop damage from rain

April 7th, 2008 - 1:02 am ICT by admin  

A file-photo of Manmohan Singh

Chandigarh, April 6 (IANS) The Punjab government Sunday announced it would carry out a special assessment of the damage to the wheat crop in various parts of the state following the widespread rainfall over the region last week. The rain over Punjab and Haryana was accompanied by strong winds and hailstorm in some parts. Though the damage is still not being acknowledged as extensive, farmers in many villages reported that their standing wheat crops were flattened by the unseasonal rain.

Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal said the Punjab government would help farmers who suffered losses due to the rain.

A government spokesman said all district heads have been asked to assess damage to standing crops and send the report to the state government Monday.

Farmers in some districts like Patiala, Sangrur, Amritsar, Hoshiarpur, Fatehgarh Sahib, Bathinda and Mohali said their crops had been damaged.

They said they were more worried as harvesting would be delayed whereas the procurement by government agencies and private players had already started April 1.

Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda also said his government would order assessment of the damage to crops in his state to provide relief to farmers.

Badal said he would meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar to demand a relief package for farmers who had suffered damages.

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