Haryana records 36% decline in farm fires - Hindustan Times
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Haryana records 36% decline in farm fires

By, Karnal
Oct 26, 2023 06:50 AM IST

This is for the third consecutive year that the state reported a fall in farm fires. During kharif harvesting season from September 15 to November 30, 2022, Haryana reported 3,661 incidents of stubble burning against 6,987 in 2021

: Haryana’s efforts to cut incidents of stubble burning have yielded significant results as the state has achieved around 36% decline in the farm fires this year, according to an official data.

Haryana records 36% decline in farm fires (AFP)
Haryana records 36% decline in farm fires (AFP)

The data from Haryana Space Applications Centre (HARSAC) revealed that the state has reported a total of 871 active fire locations (AFLs) between September 15 and October 25 against a total of 1,372 AFLs reported during the same period last year.

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This is for the third consecutive year that the state reported a fall in farm fires. During kharif harvesting season from September 15 to November 30, 2022, Haryana reported 3,661 incidents of stubble burning against 6,987 in 2021.

However, putting a complete check on the farm fires is still a challenge for authorities as on Wednesday, the state witnessed 53 cases of stubble burning in the state.

The experts are of the view that the state may achieve the over 40% decline by the end of the season on November 15, with over 75% of the crop already been harvested.

“Most of the crop waste is burned in the areas where harvesting is done with the combine harvesters, especially in the parmal rice belts. Now the harvesting of the non-basmati varieties is in its last leg and the basmati is harvested manually. There is a strong possibility that the state may achieve total 50% decline in the stubble burning cases by the end of the season”, said a senior officer of the state agriculture department pleading anonymity.

The officials of the agriculture department said that fall in the area under paddy cultivation is another factor behind the decrease in the cases of stubble burning as the total area has declined to around 32.50 lakh acres against 34.35 lakh acres last year.

Besides, the government’s move to advance the procurement of parmal paddy by a week to September 25 from October 1 has also helped to bring the cases down as the farmers got an additional one week for the management of the crop waste to get the fields ready for the next crop.

Meanwhile, the officials credited government’s efforts and cash incentive schemes, subsidised machines and awareness campaigns to encourage farmers to shun the old practice of stubble burning.

Narhari Banger, director, Haryana Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Department, termed it as a big leap towards zero stubble burning. “It was an achievement and result of the efforts of the ground-level officials who led an intensive and effective campaign to aware the farmers against the side-effects of the crop waste,” he said.

“Besides providing subsidised machines like straw balers and super-seeders, the government has also earmarked 78 crore to provide 1,000 per acre cash incentive to farmers for the in-situ and ex-situ management of crop waste,” the director said.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR
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    Neeraj Mohan is a correspondent, covering Karnal, Kaithal, Kurukshetra, Panipat and Yamunanagar districts of Haryana.

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