Subsidy for combine operators to instal straw mgmt system

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Amritsar, July 27

To help combine operators instal stubble management systems before the paddy harvesting season, the Agriculture Department has offered them help with Rs 50,000 as subsidy. The government had earlier issued orders that machines without technique to manage stubble would not be allowed to operate.

The field officials have been asked to motivate combine harvesters to instal the new system before the start of the paddy harvesting season as old machines will not be allowed to operate, said Chief Agriculture Officer Dalbir Singh Chinna.

Chinna said the National Green Tribunal had issued strict instructions to stop the practice of burning of crop residue. The department would organise 90 awareness camps in the district to create awareness among farmers and combine operators, he said.

Village panchayats, which would manage to check the burning of stubble, would be felicitated by the department, he said.

The stubble management system enables the combine harvesting machines to shred the straw into small pieces and scatter it. The shredded straw would get easily decomposed and farmers would not have to burn the same to clear their fields.

According to the department, the newly-developed system is most effective for straw management and would help in checking the practice of stubble burning. The burning of crop residue is a common practice among farmers which not only affects the soil health and creates pollution, but also inflicts damages on trees near the agricultural fields.

Though the department has been trying to motivate combine operators, it has failed to get a positive response as operators fear that this technique, apart from imposing financial burden, will slow down their machines and increase fuel consumption.

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