Elusive monsoon: Punjab seeks Rs.800 crore from centreJuly 22nd, 2012 - 8:28 pm ICT by IANS
Chandigarh, July 22 (IANS) With the elusive monsoon raising concerns for the agriculture sector, the Punjab government Sunday sought an interim relief package of Rs.800 crore from the central government.
The state government also demanded 1,000 MW additional power allocation from the central pool in lieu of the extra money being spent by it on purchase of power for the agriculture sector, Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal said here Sunday in a statement.
He said that the deficient and erratic monsoon had put financial burden on Punjab and its farmers for the irrigation of the paddy crop.
Punjab alone contributes over 70 percent of the total foodgrain (wheat and rice) to the national kitty despite having just 1.55 percent of the country’s total geographical area.
Badal said that the state government approached Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar and union Power Minister Sushilkumar Shinde to immediately come to the aid of Punjab farmers.
He said that the 70 percent deficient rains in the month of June and July was a cause of concern for the Punjab government as farmers of Punjab were contributing more than 50 percent paddy to the central pool and any failure of crop in the state could have a bearing on the nation’s food security.
Badal said that state power agencies were being forced to purchase power from different sources at exorbitant rates to feed the agriculture sector during the paddy season. Punjab Powercom purchased power of Rs.6,556 crore in recent weeks.
He added that Punjab farmers were spending crores of rupees on diesel to run generator-driven tubewells.
Punjab has an area of 29 lakh hectares area under paddy cultivation this season.
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- Punjab expects bumper paddy crop due to heavy rains - Jun 17, 2011
- Poor rain hits paddy transplantation in Bihar - Jul 30, 2012
- Haryana seeks Rs.4,050 crore from centre for drought relief - Aug 10, 2012
- Punjab, Haryana procure over 150 lakh tonnes wheat - May 01, 2012
- Akali Dal rejects hike in paddy, cotton MSP - Jun 01, 2012
- Punjab, Haryana stare at foodgrain wastage again, seek help - Jul 22, 2011
- Badal seeks Rs.500 a quintal bonus on minimum wheat price - Mar 24, 2010
- Punjab to buy power worth Rs.1,800 cr for paddy season - May 19, 2010
- Central team to visit Punjab to assess paddy damage - Oct 26, 2010
- 11 Odisha districts record deficit rain - Jul 31, 2012
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