Direct seeding of rice starts from CM Mann's village

    Chandigarh, May 16 (PTI) The direct seeding of rice (DSR) drive has started from Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann's native village Satoj in Sangrur district.
    It commenced on Sunday in the presence of Mann's mother Harpal Kaur and agriculture department officials.
    Mann has been urging growers to go for the DSR technique as it checks the depletion of underground water. He had also announced Rs 1,500 per acre support for farmers who opt for the DSR technique.
    Under the DSR technique, paddy seeds are drilled into the field with the help of a machine that does seeding of rice and spray of herbicide simultaneously.
    According to the traditional method, first young paddy plants are raised by farmers in nurseries, and then these plants are uprooted and transplanted in a puddled field.
    A few days ago, Mann had visited his village and had then urged farmers to adopt direct seeding of paddy this year. 
    "I want the people of my village to start saving Punjab's water. It will set a positive example throughout Punjab, as the farmers in CM Mann's village try to save Punjab's valuable groundwater, the rest of the farmers will follow suit," he had said.
    Jaswinder Pal Singh Grewal, an official of the agriculture department, said nodal officers have been appointed all over Punjab for direct seeding of paddy.
    They are informing farmers about its methods and benefits.
    "(In) The last season paddy was sown directly over 6 lakh hectares across the state. This time, the government aims to increase it to 12 lakh hectares," a statement quoted Singh as saying.
    While inspiring the farmers, Mann's mother Harpal Kaur said, "We lived our life, but in future, our children will question us about the groundwater level. That is why the Punjab government has embraced this direct seeding technique. The Punjab government and farmers have taken an excellent endeavour to conserve water. This will conserve water while simultaneously preserving Punjab's agriculture. We truly appreciate everyone in our village for supporting the administration during this drive". PTI CHS VSD BAL

(This story has not been edited by THE WEEK and is auto-generated from PTI)