Exploring various options
Haryana Chief Minister, Mr Manohar Lal has directed the concerned officers to encourage the farmers not to burn crop residue and also apprise them about different options for the management of crop residue so as to conserve the environment.
Mr Manohar Lal was presiding over a meeting to review the Crop Residue Management (CRM) scheme here today.
It was informed in the meeting that 34 per cent reduction has been registered in area burnt in the state upto October 22 this year as compared to the corresponding period of the previous year. Last year, crop residue burning was reported on 57,000 hectares of land as compared to only about 38,000 hectares. It is also mentioned that there is reduction of 6.5% incidents as compared to last year as on date.
It was also informed that Crop Residue Management (CRM) Fortnight was organized in the State wherein efforts were made to cover every village in the State with the assistance of about 1.20 lakh students. Apart from this, a volunteer activity in the name of “Prali Paltan” was also started with the involvement of 20,000 NSS students. In addition, students were also administered pledge that they would not burn the agriculture residue and also motivate others to refrain from this activity.
It was also informed that till now, the process of setting up of 1248 Custom Hiring Centres has been completed which is 90 per cent of the total number of such centers to be established. These machines under CHCs and also provided to individual beneficiaries are available for the farmers for in-situ management of crop residue.
The Chief Minister directed that officers of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Department to visit top 10 villages of the State where maximum crop residue burning has been reported so as to ascertain the reason behind this activity. He said that a cash award of Rs 1000 would be given to those who would give information about the burning of crop residue in their area and the identity of the person giving the information would also be kept secret. He said that the Deputy Commissioners (DCs) of the concerned districts would also organized meeting of Gram Sabha in these villages so that detailed deliberations could be held with the farmers on this issue and the actual reasons behind the same could be ascertained.
Directions were also issued by the Chief Minister for exploring various options for the purchase of crop residue from the farmers. He directed to explore the possibilities of utilization of crop residue in the sugar mills for the generation of power. He directed that a report in this regard be submitted at the earliest. He said that discussions should also be held on giving latest instruments and benefits of various schemes for encouraging the farmers to sell the crop residue and adopt the crop residue management. He also directed the Deputy Commissioners to take stringent measures to prohibit the burning of crop residue in their respective districts.
The Chief Minister directed that one Soil Testing Lab should be opened in each mandi of the State in which testing of farmer’s land would be conducted. He directed the Department of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare to chalk out a programme in this regard. Apart from this, the Chief Minister also directed that Micro Soil Testing Lab would be set up on every five villages. He directed to launch an extensive Lavanta Mukt Bhoomi (Salinity free Land) campaign in the State. He asked the Department of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare to make efforts to make the saline land cultivable so as to make this land a source of livelihood for the such farmers.
The Chief Minister expressed satisfaction on the crop residue management in the State and asked the department to make it a mass movement. He also stressed the need to become more cautious about the environment and to conserve it for future generations.
Among those present in the meeting included Chief Secretary Mrs Keshni Anand Arora, Advocate General Mr Mr. Baldev Raj Mahajan, Additional Chief Secretary Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Mr Sanjeev Kaushal, Additional Chief Secretary Environment Mrs Dheera Khandelwal and other senior officers of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare and Environment.