Agriculture Dept receives over 1.58 lac applications to avail subsidy on crop residue machinery, says Gurmeet Singh Khudian
Chandigarh: In order to curb the paddy straw burning incidents and manage the crop residue effectively, the Punjab Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Department will provide more than 24,000 crop residue management (CRM) machines including 5000 Surface Seeders at subsidized prices to farmers of the state during this harvesting season.
Punjab Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Minister Gurmeet Singh Khudian said that, in a very positive change, the department has received as many as 1,58,394 applications from farmers to avail subsidy on CRM machinery. The sanction letters to the selected beneficiaries have been released through online portal.
He said that the department will provide Super SMS, Happy seeder, Paddy Straw Chopper, Mulcher, Smart Seeder, Zero Till Drill, Surface Seeder, Super Seeder, Crop Reaper, Shrub Master/Rotary Slasher, Reversible MB Plough for In-situ and Baler & Straw Rake for Ex-situ management of paddy residue.
During the last year 2022-23, the state was able to cut down stubble burning cases by 30 per cent with the use of CRM machines, said the Agriculture Minister, while adding that Rs 350 crores have been kept reserved to curb the crop residue burning incidents during the current year. The applications for availing subsidy were invited via an online portal to ensure transparency and make the procedure easy to use for availing the subsidy.
Min Gurmeet Singh Khudian said that the Agriculture Department has also been making concerted efforts to set up custom hiring centers at each block, wherein CRM machines would be available for small and marginal farmers. “The state government has been providing 80 per cent subsidy for establishment of Custom Hiring Centers on the purchase of CRM machines, while, 50 per cent subsidy is being offered to individual farmers,” he said.
Asking the department officials to ensure transparency in the whole process, Mr Gurmeet Singh Khudian said that Chief Minister S. Bhagwant Singh Mann-led Punjab Government is proactively taking steps to address the problem of stubble burning in the state and the department has also launched an Information Education and Communication drive to educate and train farmers about available technologies for management of crop residue.